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MEMOIRS 



OF 



FREDERICK 



AND 



MARGARET KLOPSTOCK. 



TRANSLATED FROM THE GERMAN| 



BY THE 



Author of ** Fragments in Prose and Verse.** 



PRINTED BY 
RICHARD CRUTTWELL, ST. JAMES's-STREET» BATH; 

AND SOLD BV ^ 

CADELL AND DAVI£S» STRAND; HATCHARD, PICCADILLY, 
LONDON; AND S. CHEYNE, EDINBURGH; 

1808. 




\ 



ADVERTISEMENT. ^ 



\ 



rTT^HE translations contained in this 
volume, with the exception of a few 
pages, were finished by Miss S— in the 
year 1 805 ; and the Preface was read and 
approved by her. Some letters in Mr. 
Klopstock's publication are omitted, to 
avoid repetition ; as well as several passages 
in those which are inserted in this collec- 
tion ; particularly such as contain remarks 
on the Messiah, as it was thought they 
would appear dry and uninteresting to 
those who are unacquainted with that ad- 



[ iv ] 

mirable Poem. In taking the liberty to 
omit such parts of the work as seemed least 
likely to please the English reader, the 
Editor only fulfils the request of her la- 
mented friend, as expressed in her letters 
on this subjeft,* 

Bathy Dec. isos. 

^ See Fragments^ p. 12& 



PREFACE 



TH£ Letters of Margaret Klopstock^ 
printed in the Correspondence of Mr. Ri« 
chardson^ have been so much admired, that I flatter 
myself the volume now offered to the public will want 
no other recommendation^ than an assurance that it 
contains the genuine writings of that most amiable 
woman, which were published at Hamburg in the 
yeap 17599 by her afHi£l:ed huslband. To the trans-' 
lation of that publication is prefixed .an Account of 
the Life and Writings of Mr* Klopstock, with some 
letters and papers which tend to illustrate the cha- 
rafter of that great Poet. 

Klopstock, the Milton of Germany, the pride of 
his country, whose piety and virtue, still more than 
his talents, made him an honour to human nature^ 
— -Klopstock is scarcely known in iClngland \ while 



[ vi 3 

on the stage^ and in the closet^ the principles and 
morals of the rising generation are corrupted by an 
inundation of German literature^ in which the boldest 
flights of genius, the noblest sentiments^ and the 
most interesting feelings, are too oft;en employed to 
betray the unsuspe£ling heart. Many an admirable 
pen has been employed to counterad: the mischiefs 
which such writings are calculated to produce, and 
may success attend their labours I I have taken a 
difierent path in order to attain the same end, and 
will endeavour to make vice odious, by exhibiting > 
virtue in her genuine form. I offer to the public 
|ip imaginary charaAers, but a pidure drawn from 
Ibelife. Klopstock is not here presented to the 
reader as th^ first poet of the age, but as one of the 
best and most anuable of men j the tenderest bus- 
band, the kindest friend. But this is not all: he 
appears in a far higher character. Fallen in an in- 
aiant from the height of human felicity, called to 
resign sych a blessing as few of his fellow-mortals 
ever possessed,— his exalted mind seemed marked by 
Providence to shew the triumph of genuine Christ- 
ianity. In this little qoUeftion of letters, we pene- 
trate into the deepest recesses of his heart ; we see 
how much be loved and was beloved. His warm 



C Vi'l ] 

knagtnation and 'acute feelings, made him peculiarly 
susceptible of pleasure and of pain. Btest with the 
hand and heart of one of the most excellent of women, 
he was in every. respe£t ^^ happy past the common 
lot :" when he was called to prove to the world that 
no trial is too great for Christian fortitude to suppoi^t^ 
With bope& always fixed on the invisible world, he 
looked forward to that happy moment,, when those 
who have been separated on earth shall meet again 
in heaven to part no more* 

*< Strong in this hope, his comforters he cofldforts." 

Young. 

, The love of God which glowed in his hearty 
taught him to. rest with filial confidence on Hi» 
supporting hand, fully convinced that all will work 
together for good to those who feel that love as it 
ought to be fejt by a Christian. To the cold scep- 
tic.i$iii which now assumes the venerable name 
of philosophy, his sentiments may perhaps appear 
absurd and irrational. To such philosophers every 
^hing which they do not believe is superstition^ every 
thing which they do not feel is enthusiasm. But 
leaving them to the darkness which they prefer to 
the clear light of revelation, I wish to obviate oS 



... • 



[ viii ] 

JeSions which may possibly be made^ by very sin* 
cere and pious Christians^ to some of the sentiments 
expressed by Klopstock and his Margaret with re- 
gard to the nature and employment of the Angels> 
and the state of the soul after death • On subjeAs 
which are placed so far beyond the reach of human 
reason^ and on which' the word of God gives us 
only such information as is calculated to animate 
our hopes^ but not to gratify our curiosity^ it may 
perhaps be thought improper to indulge the imagi- 
nation in groundless and unfounded speculations • 
and Letters from the Dead to the Living, or from 
the Living to theDead, may be received with a smile 
of contempt, or with a frown of disapprobation. 
From this hasty decision I venture to appeal to 
those, and those onltf, whose hearts have felt the pain 
of losing what they fondly loved, and who are sup- 
ported by the hope of an eternal union in a happier 
world. Such readers (and in this vale of tears there 
are many such) will view with indulgence the little 
arts by which the mourner tried to soothe his grief. 
They will not suppose that he expe^ed his letters 
should really be read by his departed wife, but they 
will feel what he felt, and willingly yield to a sweet 
illusion. ■ 



[ ix ] 

- It 18 irue that we know little of the invisible world, 
of the happy spirits who surround the throne of the 
Greait Creator, or of the state of those who are re- 
leased from the corruptible body, and from all the 
sorrows of life^ but do we therefore doubt their 
existence ? and is it criminal to indulge the thoughts 
which are so natural to the heir of immortality, and 
to conjefture what certainly we cannot prove ? We 
know, from the highest authority, that there are 
ministring spirits, sent to minister to tho^e who ar^ 
heirs of salvadon; and it seems not improbable that 
they may, as Klopstock supposes, be peculiarly at- 
tached to individuals, and being united to them by 
a friendship,' of which earthly attachments give us 
only an imperfeft idea, that they may be employ^ 
to proteA and guard the obje£ts of their care. This 
15 ^^ a do6irine, which has prevailed more or less in 
every age of the church, which is without question 
most soothing and consolatory to human nature, and 
is certainly countenanced by several passages of holy 
writ, as well as by the authority of Origen, TertuUian, 
and other eminent fathers and commentators/** 

' * Ledures on the Gospel of St. MattheWf by Bishop 
Forteusy vol. ii. p. 82, 83. 



This^ opitiion is likewise supported' by.Grothis^tBi- 
abop Andrews, Bishop Horne^f and other eminent 
divines ; and it is not censured by onerof the bright-* 
est luminaries of our own age and. nation, whose 
words I have just cpnxlted ; and who adds, with- the 
mild wisdom, and trdy Christie libemlity, so con^ 
spieuous in all his^ writings, ^^ No one that chew 
rishes this notioii can foe charged with weakness e» 
snperbtition; and if it should be at last an error, it 
is (as Cicero says of the immortality of the soul) ao 
delightfiil an error^ that we cannot- easily sufiisr it t« 
be wrested from us." 

We know that when the body returns to the eartb 
as it was, the spirit returns to God who gave it; 
and it is a pleasing thought, that frietids thu^ sepa«» 
rated from us by death may still watch over us with 
^nder concern, may still behold,, and perhaps assist^ 
our bumble endeavours, to perform the will of Him 
^fao reserves for us such happiness as they nowenjoy« 
We may be mistaken in this id^; but it seems to 
be ati innocent illusion 3. and it has afforded comfort 
to many wretched mourners, on whom uafieeliiig 

, f See his admirable Sermon on the Existence and Em« 
ploymentof Angels, vol. iv. p. 311.. • 



Scepticism has no comfort to bestow. Such specu- 
lations tend to disengage us from sensual pleasures^ 

4 

and to strengthen our connexion with the invisible 
world; they animate our exertions to attain the 
happiness which is not to be found in this life^ and 
they reconcile us to those dispensations of Providence 
which often call us to resign our highest enjoyments, 
and oor most virtuous attachments; which command 
us to forsake a//, and follow Him, who, for the joy 
«lfaat was set before him, endured the cross. That 
^och was their efTedt on the exalted mind of Klop« 



^tock, must be evident to ail who are acquainted with 
his writings ;*^and if this little publicfation should 
increase the number of those who stikly his works 
with the attention they deserve, I flatter myself that 
I am doing an important service to my country 3 and 
(to borrow the words of the elegant translator of 
Oberon) that not the lovers of poetry only, but who- 
ever loves his neighbour, and adores his GO0, will 
owe no trivial obligation to the editor who makes 
him better acquainted with the author of ^'^ The 
Messiah/' This 1 will endeavour to do by throwing 
together such particulars as I have been enabled to 
collefl:, of the life, the charafter, and the sentiments, 
of this extraordinary man. 



Of his lovely and accomplished wife it is unne* 
cessary to say more than that she was, as Cramer 
calls her, *' Klopstock in feminine beauty.*' Her 
pifiure has been already presented to the English 
reader, drawn by her own hand, in her letters to 
Richardson, with such enchanting softness, and such 
beautiful simplicity, that it is superfluous to add any 
thing on the subjefi:. Those letters shewwvhat she 
was while she was the happy wife of Klopstock ; and 
some of those which are now presented to the public^ 
will shew what she was in the last dreadful moments 
of her life ; when, with a martyr's firmness^ she 
resigiied hei^ pure and virtuous spirit into the hands 
of her Creator. 



MEMOIRS* 



OF 



MR. KLOPSTOCK. 



FREDERICK GOTTLIEB KLOPSTOCK 
was born iu Quedlinburg, July !2d, 1724. He 

was the eldest of eleven children j six sons, .and five 

daughters. His father^ who was a magistrate of 

Quedlinburg, and afterwards farmed the bailiwic of 

Friedeburg, was a singular chara£ter; but with 

some peculiarities^ he possessed many virtues; and 

united great good-nature with extreme uprightness 

* Compiled from papers which were communicated by 

Dr. Mumssen, and translated by ^£ss S • To which 

are added extracts from *« Klopstock Er und iiber ihn," by 
Professor Cramer; Hamburg, 1780: and from a Life of 
Klopstocki published in the Monthly Magazine. 

B 



C 2 ] 

of principle^ and uncommon firmness and resolution. 
His eccentricities appear to have had no serious in- 
fluence on the education of young Klopstock. He 
left the powers of his body and mind to unfold them- 
selves freely^ unrestrained by severity;* and his boyish 
years flowed on in an uninterrupted stream of hap- 
piness^ resultingfroma proper distributionof his time 
between serious business and innocent relaxation. 
In a beautiful country, on the banks of the Saal, the 
poet passed his early years, under the guidance of a 
private tutor. He was employed during some hours 
every day in learning the elements of the languages, 
and he devoted the remaining part of his time, with 
youthful ardour, to athletic exercises. When he was 
fit fi>r a public school, in his thirteenth year, his 
father took him to the Gymnasium atQuedlinburg. 
Here Klopstock passed* three years, unmarked by 
fame, and rather unfolding his corporeal than his 
mental powers: but the remembrance of those un- 
fettered ytSLts aflbrded him, ever after, the sweetest 
enjoyment. Even in his old age, he intreated all 
his friends who travelled through Quedlinburg, to 
visit the play-yard where he had enjoyed those early 
pleasures which are never foi^ttet^ and which he 
loved to describe even to the mitaitestxircumstance. 



C 3 ] 

It appears tbat while he attended the Gymnasium^ 
he had in some degree neglected his studies^ for when 
speaking of his intended removal to the College, he 
says, *^ My father now represented to me that I 
must be particularly industrious, as the time of my 
remaining at the College would depend upon the 
success of my first examination, and on the conse* 
quent rank which I should obtain in the classes. I 
followed his advice, and again assiduously applied 

* 

myseff to Latin and Greek j and I still remember 
how frequently I walked up and down my garret in 
the heat of the sun, and studied in the sweat of my 
brow/' His introdudion at the College is thus de- 
scribed by Mr. Cramer. ^ His father now took him 
to the College, and the examination was arranged. 
The Bettor condu£ted him into an apartment, and 
gave him an exercise to write> leaving with him 
Weismann's Iiexicon^ and a grammar. It was to 
be compleated in three hours, and then be was to 
ring the bell ; but he rung before the appointed tim^. 
The Re£tor appeared. '^ Is it finished already ?*' 
said he] then cast his eye over it^ and sent him into 
,the play-ground, where ttie scholars assembled, as 
usual, to welcome and to ridicule the new corner. 
One of the elder ones came to him with a scornful 

B 3 



[ * ] 

air^ and eaid^'' K-l-o-p-Klop stock, is that your 
name?" Upon which his uncommon name was 
immediately echoed and re-echoed, and laughed at. 
This enraged him, and gcnng up to the boy, 
with a menacing air and stern look, he answered, 
*' Yes, my name is Klopstock:" and from this time 
he was never assailed with any raillery, particularly as 
the Re6lbr highly applauded his exercise, and imme* 
diatcly gave him the highest place in the third class. 
Klopstock was in his sixteenth year when he pro- 
ceeded from the Gymnasium to the College, where 
Vis chara£ter as a man and as a poet began to be 
displayed in a very advantageous point of view. The 
reclor Freytag deserves'particular notice amongst his 
teachers: he elucidated the ancients with a precision 
and taste which were very rare at that time : he 
sought to make his scholars familiar, not only with 
the language, but with the spirit of the wrker. 
Under this gentleman the industrious youth ac- 
quired perfeA knowledge of the classics, entered into 
all the beauties of the ancient authors, and while he 
followed with rapture the bold flights of their ori- 
ginal genius, he fed a fiaine within himself which 
was soon to burst forth in full lustre. He read few 
books> but they were the best; and be read with acute 



C « ] 

discritnination and unwearied attention. Virgil 
ivas bis favourite poet; and while he saw in him the 
model of perfe£k beauty, he felt a strong impulse to 
imitate him. He applied himself very diligently to 
compositions both in prose and verse ; and some 
Pastorals, according to the fashionable taste of the 
time, preceded one of the noblest plans that ever 
entered the soul of a poet. 

At this early period of his life, Klopstock formed 
the resolution of writing an epic poem, which till 
then had not existed in the German language. He 
tells us himself how this idea- arose in his mind. 
His enthusiastic admiration of Virgil) the glory he 
promised himself in being the first who should pro- 
duce a work like the ^neid in the language of his 
native country 3 the warmth of patriotism which early 
animated him to raise the fame of German literature 
in this particular to a level with that of other Euro- 
pean countries; the just indignation he felt in reading 
the works of a Frenchman, who had denied to the 
Germans any talent for poetry; all combined, with 
the consciousness of his own superior powers, to 
spur bim on to the execution of his exalted plan. 

In his beautiful Oration on quitting the College at 
Quedlinburg, after a very ingenious dissertation on 



[ 6 ] 

the fltate of poetry in Germany, he ^presseg his 
idea of the talents requisite for the composition oFan 
Epic Pbem, in the following words. '^ If amongst 
our present poets there may not be one who is 
destined to embellish his native country with this 
honour; hasten to arise, O glorious day, which shall 
bring such a poet to light ! And thou sun which 
shall first behold, and with mild beams enlighten 
him, approach 1 May virtue, and wisdom, with the 
celestial Muse, nurse him with the tenderest care! 
May the whole field of nature be displayed before 
him, and the whole magnificence of our adorable 
religion. To him may even the range of future 
ages be no longer wrapt in impenetrable darkness 1 
And by these instruftors may he be rendered 
worthy of immortal fame, and of the approbation 
of Sod himself, whom above all he will praise!" 
On this passage Cramer makes the following obser* 
vation. ^ Elowmuch would any other person have 
found to say of himself on this occasion; but he, 
with his whole plan in his head and in his heart, 
and a determined resolution to execute it, and to be . 

that poet of whom he here speaks ; he says no^ 

thing.* Klopstock was long undecided in the choice 
of his subjed:. He sought out some hero in the Ger- 



[ r ] 

man history, and had once fixed ^n the Emperor 
Henry, the founder of the freedom of hia native city;* 
hut after choosing and rejefiling many different sub- 
jeds, he at last formed the plan of his Messiah; and 
this preference was given even ^efore he was ac- 
^ quainted with Milton, whose Paradise Lost became, 
soon after that period, his favourite and almost un- 
interrupted study. 

' An interesting account of Klopstock, when very 
young, was inserted inBodmer'sLetterson Criticism^ 
and reprinted by Cramer, in the year 1780, with 
the approbation of the poet. Mr. Cramer speaks of 
it in the following manner. ^* I think it cannot be 
wrong to insert here this letter of our excellent Bod-> 
mer, since it is very worthy to be known, and is in a 
colleftion of pieces which are no longer read. Klop- 
stock himself is, I know, well satisfied with it; and 
it is very remarkable that Bodmer should have drawn 
such an animated portrait of him previous to their 
pei^onal acquaintanccr *^ I can venture to assert, that 
if we divest this representation of mere fiction and 

* Henry the first, sumamed the Fowler, who began to 
reign in the year 920. He conquered the Huns, and after- 
wards made a successful war on the Venedi, who inhabited 
Saxony. He died in 936. 



[ 8 ] 

« 

ornament^ we shall find much truth which Bodmer 
has Wended with it/*- — From this account I ven- 
ture to make a few extrafts, omitting conyersationa 
which are probably fiftitious. 

In his father's library are many, sermons^ and ten 
Bibles^ but not a single poet. He soon distinguished 
the Bible from all the rest^ still more through his 
own taste^ than on account of his father's earnest 
recommendations. He made it his constant pocket 
companion^ not merely as a duty, but for pleasure. 
While yet in his childhood^ he was so well acquaint- 
ed with the phraseology of the Hebrew language^; 

4 i 

and the figurative inanner of representing thingsy 
which he found in that booky that he used it^ un- 
known to himself, wherever he would express any 
thing with earnestness. — In a walk with his father^ 
in a fine spring morning, before he was quite four- 
teen years old^ they had sat down under an oak^ and 
a cool western breeze blew on them. His first words 
were^ ^^ All around the oak receives us in his shadow. 
Soft airs breathe on us^ like a whisper of the presence 
of God.'* Then again he said, ^* How peaceful 
grows the tender moss^ here on the cool earth ! The 
hills lie round about in lovely twilight^ as though 
new made, and blooming like Eden/* 



C 9 3 

At that time the strong representations of iiianU 
mate nature^ which he found in the poetical books of 
Job and the Prophets^ afTefjied him most deeply^ and 
he was often heard, when he awoke in the morning, 
repeating whole chapters with a strong accent, as 
a poet might do who was reciting his own work. 
The descriptions were so strongly impressed on his 
mind, that when the things themselves came before 
his eyes, he would often say they were not new to 
him; he had already seen them in the Psalms and 
the Prophets. When he approached to manhood, 
the pathetic passages took the same strong hold on 
his heart, as the glittering and magnificent images 
had before taken on his fancy. A promise that 
fallen man should find mercy, drew tears from his 
eyes; a trace of the immortality of the soul threw 
him into a transport of gratitude. Religion did not 
remain a njere ^speculation of the brain; it was a 
clear view of the greatness and glory of the 
Messiah; it was the pure feeling of love and 
grateful adoration. From this turn of mind sprung 
a style of writing full of poetry, before he had ever 
seen a verse, or knew any thing of prosody. He 
was a poet, while neither he nor his father sus- 
pe£ted it. I have seen a letter he wrote, before be 



[ 10 J 

had attained his seventeenth year^ to a youth of hts 
own age^ who seems to have been his only intimate 
acquaintance: it contained the following expressions. 
« My friend ! Image of my mind! whom an in- 
visible Son of Heaven raises up, with me, to higher 
hopes than those of the human herd; dost thou look 
on the tender youth of our friendship with that 
cheerful eye, which makes the innocence of youthful 
days cloudless like the days of eternity? What 
dost thou feel in the expressions wherewith thy 
noble heart consecrates to thy friend, more than 
merely a verbal friendship ? Let us so ennoble it by 
the re&itude of our minds, that He who pours down 
his blessings from Heaven, may look with pleasur^ 
on it/' 

In the autumn of the year 1 745, Klopstock left 
the College at Quedlinburg, and removed to the 
University of Jena, His intention was to study 
theology, but the dull disputes of scholastic divines 
did not accord with the state of his mind at that 
period. He wanted no evidence to prove the truth 
of a religion which had taken entire possession of 
bis heart, and he could not listen with patience to 
the cavils of infidels, or the cold reasonings of me- 
taphysicians; and after a tedious half year, the 






C 11 ] 

ardent youth^ whode mind was accustomed to better 
nourishment^ removed with his relation Schmidt to 
the university of Leipsic. 

During the few months spent at Jena, he had, 
however, in the stillness of his closet been realizing 
some part of his intended plan by tracing out the 
three first cantos of the Messiah. He composed 
these three cantos in prose, but his performance 
greatly displeased him. He was fired with a lau- 
dable indignation at feeling himself so inferior in 
harmony to his great models Homer and Virgil. 
Lost in his own reflexions, he would frequently 
wander up and down the country round Jena, and 
in one of these solitary walks he came to a deter- 
mination to imitate the great poets of antiquity, 
in the structure of their verse. In a few hours he 
compleated a page of Hexameters, and from that 
time decided on composing his poem in this mea- 
sure* Thus he was the first who introduced into 
German poetry a metre which was supposed to be 
unattainable in that language, and he afterwards 
triumphantly defended this mode of versification, 
both by example and argument. 

In the spring of the year 1746, he carried with 
him to Leipsic the three first books of the Messiah, 



[ 18 ] 

Avhicfa astonished and delighted a few ingenious 
friends to whom he shewed them. Amongst these 
early friends of Klopstock were^ Cramer^ Gartner^ 
Schlegel^ Giesecke^ Zacharia^ Gellert^ and Rabener. 
Schmidt^ the relation as well as the bosom friend of 
the poet, I\ad accompanied him to Leipsic. These 
young favourites of the Muses had formed themselves 
into a literary society^ in order to improve their taste 
by mutual citicisms on their various essays^ of 
which the best were printed in a paper entitled ^^Bre- 
men Contributions/' Klopstock was admitted into 
their small society^ and the Messiah; was. made 
known to them in consequence of a scene which is 
thus described by Mr. Cramer. ^' In Klopstock's 
apartment the Messiah first came to light After 
the first compliments between him and my father^ 
Schmidt proceeded immediately to the execution of 
a plan he had formed. He turned the discourse to 
literary subjeds^ spoke of the English with excessive 

praise> and than adverted to the Germans^ and par- 
ticularly to the Contributors^:]: of whom he spoke in 
a manner that induced my father to take the part of 

J The Literary Society who published the Bremen Con* 
tributions. 



[ 18 ] 

his friends^ but with the greatest moderation, ac-> 
cording to his well-knawn character; He said, they 
knew very well that they were not perfeft, but they 
endeavoured 'to become so. They employed all 
possible severity- of criticism towards themselves; 
they-'— Schmidt interrupted him, and said, with a 
smile, ^^Yes, yes, severity of criticism is very well ; 
but genius, not one German possesses that; the 
English, — the English/' My father was preparing 
to reply, when Klopstocl^ who till then had been only 
a spefliator, grew warm and interposed. * Dear Mr. 
Cramer, what will you think of my friend ? But he 
only pretends to insult you. When yon shall become 
more acquainted with his manner, you will find that 

he is not in earnest'.* **What, (cried Schmidt,) does 

• 

he say so? Do not believe him. He is themost severe 
critic amongst us. If you did butknowhowmalicious 
he is !" Then starting up, with an arch look, and 
a firm grasp, he drew the manuscript of the Messiah 
out of a chest. '* There, there, (said he,) now you 
«hall hear something^ The affair now became 
serious* Klopstock, whose plan of secrecy was at 
once overturned by this treachery, sprung up, his 
countenance glowing, and said, * Schmidt, I do 
not know you at this moment.* He struggled with 



[ 1* ] 

him^ endeavouring to snatch away the manuscript ;. 
but Schmidt^ who became more and more resolute^ 
paid no r^ard to his opposition^ kept him off with 
one hand^ and with the other held up the papers^ 
like Csesar when he swam across the Nile, My 
father^ whose curiosity was now strongly excited^ 
entreated ; Klopstock protested; but Schmidt began 
to T^d. Still however Schmidt contrived a little 
mischief; for though he usually read well^ he now 
took pains to do it ill^ that he might if possible 
induce my father to find fault with the work^ 
or at least to listen coldly^ in order that his 
own triumph over the Contributors might be com^ 
plete. But my father was too sharp- sighted to be 
deceived. Scarcely had Schmidt read one page^ 
before he interrupted him with much animation, 
^ Mr. Schmidt^ I must tell you that should be read 

* - _ 

quite in a different manner/ '^ You have taken 
the words out of my mouthy (said Klopstock;) and 
now, Schmidt, since the secret is betrayed, give it to. 
me. I will read it myself." He now took courage^ 
and read the whole first canto, and he particularly 
excelled iu reading Hexameters. The terminatioo 
of this adventure may easily be imagined. Hos«- 
tilities with Schmidt were presently laid aside ; my 



C li ] 

father received the poem as it ought to be received 
expressed to Klopstock his wannest approbation, 
and said there was a society of friends^ to whom it 
would afibrd the greatest pleasure, if he might be per- 
mitted to impart it to them, and that it should remain 
a secret with them* The heart of our dear friend 
was already gained, and he consented. My father 
took the Poem first to Gartner, then to the others, 
and in consequence was sent, by them all, with an 
invitation to Klopstock to join their society. He 
accepted it. They regarded each other at the first 
moment as friends, and they were really such, for 
amongst such beings tedious ceremonies are useless.*' 
In the two following years he produced many 
excellent Odes, which, together with the three cantoa 
of the Messiah, appeared at first in the Bremen 
Contributions. It may with truth be observed, 
that at this period Germany was not prepared for the 
reception of a poet of so superior a cast; the public 
taste wa^ not sufficiently formed to relish the lofty 
flight of Klopstock's genius; but his cantos were 
read with the highest warmth of admiration by those 
who possessed a genuine taste for poetry, and their 
applause was sufficient to animate the poet in the 
prosecution of his sublime plan. 



C 16 ] 

Klopstock's residence at Leipsic became unplea- 
sant to him after he had lost his chosen friends, who 
gradually left the University. The warm and tender 
attachment that bound him to this estimable circle 
in Leipsic, formed one of the sweetest recolleftions 
of his past life, on which he dwelt with peculiar 
pleasure even in his old age. When he afterwards 
contemplated in pensive sadness each of these be- 
loved friends sinking successively into the grave 
before him, his only comfort was the remembrance 
of what they had once been to him, and the prospect 
of what they would be in a happier world. 

In the course of the year 1 748, Klopstock Jeft 
Leipsic, to reside at Langensalza, in the house of a 
relation named Weiss, whose children he undertook 
to instruft. This is an interesting period in the life 
of Klopstock, as he now became acquainted with the 
beautiful sister of his friend Schmidt, who is the 
subjeft of some of his most admired poems, in which 
she is distinguished by the name of Fanny. He 
never had courage to make proposals of marriage, 
as he thought he had no prospeft of success, and the 
lady was soon afterwards united to another. Many of 
his oderand elegies, as well as his letters to Bodmer, 
prove the purity and ardour of this youthful passion; 



and the pahi of not seeing himself beloved^ added 
to the influence of severe application on his healthy 
conspired to throw him into a deep melancholy^ 
which lasted for some time^ and threw a dark co« 
louring over all his poetic effusions. Ii is probably 
to this period of Klopatock's life that Mr. Cramer 
alludesywhen speaking of his cheerful dispo^on in 
the latter part of his life he makes the following 
observations. ^^ I could wish to know from what 
cause it arises^ that in many persons who are re- 
markable for sensibility^ and strong powers of ima- 
gination^ precisely that period of life when the body 
is in its greatest vigour^ and the animal spirits are 
the most lively; when the prosped of all the de- 
lights of honour and friendship is most fair and 
blooming, and when the termination of these enjoy- 
ments appears at the greatest distance; — that period 
is^ however^ frequently the time of melancholy re* 
fleAionSj of familiarity with the grave^ and habitual 
contemplation of death. This '^ Youth for ever,"* 
whose age even now shines with all the brightness 
of a fine spring morning, and who, with the well- 

* ** Den ewigen Jiingling,'* the Youth for ever, was the 
title given him by some of his intimate friends, as appears by 
one of J)r. Mumsieti'a letters to the Editor. 

G 



C 18 ] 

regulated disposition of a wise man^ bis brow never 
clouded with melancholy or ill-humour^ gathers all 
the flowers of joy^ .was fprmerly wrapped in the 
mourning attire of Young, Never did he more se^* 
rioUsIy refleS: on the instability of all earthly ihings^ 
or on the importance of eternity. Many times di^ 
he then dip his pencil in the darkest colours^ while 
on the richest and most beautiful night pieces^ he 
painted— <leath/^ This however wore away entirely 
after a few years^ from travellings agreeable society, 
coofltant occupation^ increasing fame^ and 4 fresh 
attachment. 

While Kiopstock had retired from the worM to an 
dbfscure retreat^ his Messiah excited such a degree of 
attention^ as no other book had ever awakened in 
Germany. Friends and enemies^ admirers and 
critics^ appeared pn all sides; but its success was 
owing as much to the sacredness of the subje& as to 
the beauty of the poetry. Young preachers quoted it 
from the pulpit j and Christian readers loved it, as a 
book that afforded them, amidst the rage of con- 
troversy, some scope for devout feeling. By^some 
divines it was condemned as a presumptuous fiflion; 
and the partisans of the grammarian Gdttshed raised 
still greater clamour against the work on account of 



C ^19 ] 

the language ; while the Swiss critics, on the jothj^r 
hand^ extolled it to the greatest degree. Bodmer in 
particolaf^ the translator of Milton^ embrace the 
cause of the German epic bard wit|^ ^thusiastiQ 
ardour^ and contributed greatly to accde]:at(e the 
celebrity of the poem. Klopstock^ W'^Ose mind waf 
occupied with sublime and original ide^?^ engaged 
in none of these disputes, but sulTered friends aixd 
enemies to wnte as they pleased, while^he was silent^ 

» 

and followed the bent of his genius. 

in the summer of the year 1750> Klopstock tvfeat 
to Zurick, on an invitation from Bodmer, at whose 
house he resided, and with whom he had previously 
carried on a correspondence. Some of his l^ltelns to 
this excellent friend will be found in the following 
colteftion. Klopstock was received in Switzerlainl 
with the most flattering marks of esteem and respe&« 
The sublime and enchanting beauties of that ro- 
mantic country, the friendship of some highly cul* 
tivated minds, and the uncorrupted manners of that 
virtuous nation, would perhaps have made him 
faithless to his native land, had not an unexpe&ed 
circumstance opened to him very different prospefts 
in life. The good genius of Germany raised up 
the illustrious Danish Count Bernstorff, whose capa- 

C 2 



[ 20 ] 

cious mind traced in the very commencement of 
Klopstock's work the future glory of the poet. 
The three first cantos had been presented to him at 
Paris^ where he resided as Danish Ambassador^ and 
he immediately resolved to take the author under his 
patronage. By Count Bemstorff Klopstock was 
recommended to the favourite minister of Frederick 
V. and through him to the King himself^ by whom 
he was invited to reside at Copenhagen^ on a pension 
which set him above pecuniary cares^ and left him 
at liberty to compleat the Messiah. This entitled 
the Danish Monarch to the noble ode iii which 
Klopstock dedicated to him his sublime poem^ and 
gratitude attached him to his new country.^ 

It was in the spring of the year 1751, that Kiop* 
stock quitted his beloved Switzerland, and travelled 
through Saxony to Denmark. He visited his re- 
lations at Quedlinburg, and some of his academical 
friends at Brunswick; and at Hamburgh he first saw 

* It appears howeyer that his friends thought him idle; 
&r in a letter to Cramery dated May 6, 17 55 f Rabener says, 
*^ How is Ellopstock? Here people think he is dead. If 
we do not receive the promised book at the present lair, I 
shall be of opinion that it is not right for kings to give pen- 
sions to great geniuses.'^ 



C «i 1 

the lovely and accomplished Margaretta Mdller^ who 
afterwards made him the happiest of men. An in- 
terestinjg account of the progress of this attachment 
will be found in Mrs. Klopstock's letters to Rich- 
ardson; and the letters of hes friends, after the fatal 
event which put a period to the poet's short-lived 
felicity, with his own account oi her chara&er, and 
some fragments <rf'h€r writings^ form the principal 
contents of the following pages. 

After his first meeting with this lady, Klopstock 
continued his journey to Copenhagen^ where be 
lived in the enjoyment of tranquillity and leisure^ 
beloved and respe£led by all who were friends to 
science and virtue. Here he studied the works of 
Young and Richardson. With the former he kept 
up a correspondence, and addressed to him an Ode^ 
which is strongly expressive of esteem and admira- 
tion. The letters which constantly passed between 
him and his beloved Margaret, knit still closer 
the bonds of affection; but domestic circumstances 
obliged them to delay their union to a distant period. 
In the year 1752, the King having determined to* 
spend the summer in Holstein, Klopstock took that 
opportunity to return to the objedl of his afFeSion at 
Hamburg, and consecrated this happy interval to 



love and the ittUses. To this cicemustiUice we are 

indebted for hU captivating ^tig&tobts Margaret, 

under the title of Cidli^ the natncf which he had 

giiferi to JairUs's- daughteivin the Mteiah. !£» 

ibatiimbmai alliance was^ however, still d^ferred> and 

he was obliged to ledre her once ndore, in ordbr ta 

listurp. with the King to Gopenfag^nj where he 

Continued dt!irixig the whole of the following^ jrcar* 

In the summer of the year 1^54, he tt'av^ed again 

t^' Hambiirg^ and at lengthy on tfa^ lOtfa of June, 

be was united to the arable objeA'pS his tiffeftioR'. 

* 

^er. His marriage he w^ht vtrith hrd bride to Clued-- 
lidburg; and it wfts thdre that> after, a^evere illtiess. 
Be wi'ote hi^ dekbvited Ode on Be^ldv^iy. But he 
etojojrcd for » very' short time the blibs of connubial 
affbftionf in the year it58> the belbve^ partner of 
his bean died in chikib6d> anti hi& afi^Stion may be 
more easify imagined than described* He cherished 
the reniembranee 6f this* charging Woman to the 
last moment of his life^ and always found a melan- 
choly pleasure in visiting her gf^e in' the village of 
Ottehseh, near Hamburg, ^trnt-e he. dire6ted that 
his own reihauis should be placed by her side. 

The afflicted heart of Kldpstbck stilhhungxxi. his 
prptfej^or and friehd. Count Bernsiorif ; and he made 



f M J 

Copenhagen bivresidenc^' tiil that great man resigned 
hisoffice.in Ibe year 1771* After this period the 
poet returned to Hamburg, wheiire he still enjoyed a 
pensioa'&om the King of Denmark, by whom he 
was much e»teenied and loved. In 1 7 7 5, the Marg-^ 
grave Frederick of Baden sent him a pressing invi* 
tation to Carlsrue, where he remained about a year, 
and then returned to Hamburg, at which place he 
resided during the remainder of fats life* 

Notwithstanding the serious turn of mind which' 
pervades the writings of this great poet, he was fond 
of society, and very lively and agreeable. His coun- 
tenance (as I am informed by one of his friends) wa» 
extremely pleasing, though not remarkably hand- 
some. His eyes were blue, full of animation, but 
ehiefly expressive of softness and benevolence. * His 
voice was uncommonly sweet ; and when he first 
addressed a stranger, it was in a low, gentle, intreaU 
mg tone, till by degrees he commanded his whole 
attention by the spirit and energy of his conversation,* 
Animated with all the fire of genius, but always 
gentle and unassuming, there was no harshness in 
his look or manner; nor were his extraordinary 
talents marked by any strong liiles, or remarkable 
expression of countenance; so that where he was 



not known, his iigiife would probably bare attrafted 

.no notice^ till he entered into conversadcm. His 

chara£ler is thus described by his friend StuHs. 

^' Klopstock is always cheerful in company, and 

possesses an unabating vivacity. He often adorns 

a trifling thought with all the richness of his poetic 

powers. He is never severe in ridicule, nor positive 

in argument, but expresses bis opinicKis with great 

Aodesty, and listens attentively to the opposite sen* 

timents of others. Equally remote from the servility 

of the courtier, or the superciliousness of vulgar 

pride, he never loses sight of the man in the splen- 

^ dour or the meanness of his situation : he esteems 

birth highly, but real merit still more. In the polite 

circles of insipidly fine people, unmarked by any 

9tamp of character, Klopstock is never to be found; 

he prefers the humbler and more substantial enjoy- 

inent of domestic friendship, heightened by the 

surrounding charms of nature in rural seclusion. I 

have often been delighted at seeing him pass by 

amidst a crowd of young people, by whom he is 

almost always surrounded, and who appeared highly 

gratified at being in his company. In painting, he 

Ipves only what delineates life, deep thought, and 

speaking (expression ; in music, only what ajTe^s the. 



[ 25 ] 

heart* : One of hi» favourite amusements is skaiting^ 
md he. has recomm^ided it with enthusiasm. This 
amusement had once nearly proved fatal to him. 
The ice broke^ and his life was exposed to very 
serious . danger ; but be was saved by his noble 
friend Count BemstorflF/' 

Klopstock's merit as a poet is now universally 
adaiowledged by all who are capable of forming any 
judgment on the subject. His divine songs breathe 
the genuine spirit of Christianity; zeal in the cause 
of truths fervent piety^ and active benevolence. All 
is grand^ sublime^ and original. His Messiah has 
raised the fame of his native country in the highest 
department of epic poetry to a level with that of 
every other nation. Such at least is the opinion of 
many excellent critics^ who share the regret which 
Klopstock always strongly expressed^ that this admi* 
rable work has not been translated into the English 
language in such a manner as it deserves.* From 

* Note by Mr, Cramer. — 1 was acquaint^ with an Eng- 
lishman of the name of Eaton, a young man of an excellent 
understanding, who had made a sufficient progress in the 
German language to understand Klopstock's poetry, and to 
be an enthusiastic admirer of hinu As he had been consul 
at Bassora, and had made many voyages to the Levant, 



[ s» ] . 

die supa-ior qualittes, of this great poet in the epic 
$SJfU, itis usuaftoiorget his dramatic talents^ wbieh 
' are allowed to be considerable^ though his tragedies 
are more fitted for reading than. representation. His 
first tragedy^ entitled the Death of Adam^ was sue-* 
ceeded by two others^ entitled Solomon and David^ 
and by thiee dramatic pieces. Intended to celebcate 
the Gennasi hero Hermana, or Arminus. In Storm's 
*^ (Sritical Historyx)f German Poetry and Elloquence^" 
printed at Berlin in the year 1806, are the following 
remarks on the character and the poetical talents of 
KIopstis>cfc. 

^ We may observe in Klopstock three equally 
excellent traits of character which are displayed in 

Arabic and Persicf were ad familiar to him as his mother 
tongue. He related to me a singular anecdote respecting the 
eSt^ of the Messiah. He once attempted to tranaiate toaa 
Asabiah ^es^y asaccuratdy as the great diffbrence betweea 
Uae lapguagts would permit, a passage jn a Hymn to Christ. 
He said that it was impossible to describe the attention with 
which the Arab listened to it. At length the bk>od rose 
into his face; he stood up, and exclaimed with vehemence, 
*< Excellent ! but Allah pardon him for having so highly 
exalted the Son." He then begged Mr. Eaton to proceed, 
and' agdin rose hastily, with a sort of indignant ^sKimiradoll, 
continitially repeating, «' Allah pardon hun, for having so 
highly exalted the Son.** 



\ 



C w 1 

hid poenis^-^attiotrsm^ warmth of 'friendship^ and 
pure Religion; 'tod ^ath 6f the^e d^sert^es 9otnt ob- 
servations. The ^et apj>Wt«d ih Germany at a 
time, when, uncoii^kHis of bar owA poo^s^'or at 
least negle^iing'them, we fevourri baly foreiga' 
prod\i(%icHis, a^ wer& ndt resti^aiiled from proceed*- 
iftg^ in ihat unworthy cohduft, eve» .by the insolence 
wkh \vhich our neighbours received ftuch adulation. 
Wehstd aecuston^d burselttesto consider the poeticaL 
d)m|)o»tions of tHe French as particularly excellent p 
and whilst one person after another, repeated this 
opinibn> all our attempts: .were, imitatioiis of those 
models; and thebold^ ilatloiial, poetic spirit of former 
tim^sSvas regaV<d^d-with^omempt^ Klop8e6ck alone 
had the courage to awaken the attention of his sleep- 
ingfeounlrymen, by his*noble compositions, fiill of ar- 
dbur^t^d tenderness; inA9rder that they might resume 
their *ricient force-and energy, and 'that calm dignity, 
wM'ch confides in itstelfy and is unwilling to borrow 
from others. He was' the man- who first animated 
his native lanil with the spirit to attain to that degree 
of excellence in the higher species'of poetry, of which 
it wa^ capable, and to whidi it has already attained. 
iPrie^ship inspired Klopstock ^th many of his 
finest "Odesv It is a thought which fills us with the 



E «8 ] 

isiost pleaaiDg seus^tioos^ that this man, who roust 
have felt so firm a confidence in himself, yet V;on* 
stantly lived on the sentiments of. friendship, and 
even had the art of warming many cooler hearts vi^ith 
the overik)wing» of his affeftion; and although that 
animated and ardent feeling of friendship should 
sometimes have deceived hifn, vrith regard to the 
worth of those on whom he bestowed it, yet even 
they who had the least merit amongst them were 
capable of appreciating in some degree hid degant 
and rich mind » 

Klopstock's piety, in ita full extent, as it influ* 
CQced both his heart and his understaxiding, may 
clearly be discovered in his Odes, entitled, ^^ The 
Omnipotent," *' The Cootemplatiqn of God,'* &c, 
and in the plan of the Messiah. When we contem- 
plate this last in all its dignity and grandeur, and at 
the. same time consider the courage which was re- 
quisite in order to adopt it as the subjed of an epic 
po^m, we shall, even on this account alone, bestow 
on Klop&tock the title of a great poet. The reception 
which the Messiah found in Germany, was adequate 
to its merits ; we congratulated ouriselves on 4 work 
which the most sacred spirit had inspired, and the 
admiration which wa$ excited by this extraordinary 



poet restrained the frivolous criticisms^ with which 
the Gottingen school had presumed to attack his 
work.** 

As an lulditional proof of the justice of these ob« 
servations on the character of Klopstock^ I will here 
insert the conclusion of the speech which he pro- 
nounced when he quitted the College in his twenty- 
first year. It shews what were the sentiments which 
animated his heart from youth to age. 

'^ Piety^ and the duty of expressing a thankftil 
heart towards thee^ O Eternal God^ the holiest and 
the sweetest duty which is imposed on mortal man, 
now animate and inflame my soul; but at the same 
time I am confused at the view of thy majesty; I 
tremble with holy awe; and when I would wish to 
say much that should be worthy of Thee, I am speech** 
less. I stand &r off with down-cast eyes, astonished 
and immoveable. Yet wherefore do I stand thus? 
Though I am an atom amidst thy works, O thou 
great Creator, I will fall down and worship. The 
paths through which Thou leadest man, can by none 
of us be entirely discovered; but we find in this 
labyrinth the wisest order, and the highest degree 
pf mercy and love. What wonder do these thoughts 
raise in me ! The soul is averse to receive the con* 



E 30 ] 

ytftion that $he cannot x^odt^eiinplate h^self wijtbout 
being liable lx> error; but: she \f:9xti9'{2^d thdt is her 
greatest happiness) that she cannot err^ when con- 
vinced of her own ignorance^ she believes it to be 
the highest .wisdom to adore Tbuea^ O th(w Hottest of 
Beifigs I Delighting to be occupied in the <^ntein- 
plation of Thee^ she ov^flows with pure afi4 saqred 
joy^ and triumphs in the reeoUe£tion oC her dimity 
and immortal. destination^ glorious in divine lights 
This is' the greatest blessings which Thou^ O most 
Beneficent of Beings, hast conferred upon me* With 
bow much dd^t and astonishment do I glorify 
that goodness, which has bestowed on me an en« 
lightened mind, and health, by which I am enabled 
attentivdy to contemplate thy fair creation. O Best 
of Bein^, let me so employ these gifts, that I may 
by their aid seriously endeavour to acquire piety.and 
virtue. And finally, to the benefits which thou be- 
stowest on my body, O grant stability; and to those 

which my immortal soul has. received, eternity. '- 

*^ And you, my most beloved friends, may with 
reason expeftfrom me some expression of gratitude; 
since I have acquired much, and much that is ex- 
cellent, in youT society. I have always attentively 
studied you as a book; I have often dwelt long even 



x 



C 81*3 

oa the most insigmficant p^^s, and have repeatedly 
peru$ed them with such unwearied diligence^ that 
the greatest part q£ their contents remains for ever 
impressed on my memory. If I read with a strong 
spirit of investigaUon^ reproach me not; for if it 
were in my ppwer to confer honour on you, this 
would redound to your honour. Many books weary 
me in the reading; and those must be very excellent 
which I allow myself to read a second time. But 
why should I dwell so long on this comparison? I 
behold you^ speak to you^ and call you friends. You 
have seen^ and will see^ many in your society^ of 
more exalted talents and learning ; but none who 
could more carefully observe your condud^ or more 
delight in your society^ than myself. 

^^ And finally^ my College, guardian and witness 
of this friendship, hail to thee! For ever shall I 
remember thee with gratitude; for ever consider and 
revere thee as the parent of those works, which I 
have ventured to commence under thy proteSion!*' 

The remaining years of the life of Klopstock afford 
few events. In 1791, when he was in his sixty* 
eighth year, he mai:ried Johannah von Wenthem, 
who was nearly related to his first wife ; and much 
of the happiness of his cheerful old age was owing 



t 



C 82 ] 

to his union with this lady. To the close of life he 
retained his poetical powers; and his sacred harp 
still sent forth strains of sublime and heartfelt piety. 
Klopstock died at Hamburgh on the i4thof March^ 
1803^ in the 80th year of his age^ with a firm ex- 
peAation of happiness beyond the grave. His strong 
feelings of religion shed a lustre on his last moments, 
when he displayed a noble example of what he had 
often sung in his divine poems. He preserved his 
gentle animation^ his fervent piety^ and the admi* 
rable serenity of his mind^ till the close of life. To 
the last his heart was as warm as ever!; and the hopes 
which had supported him through all his trials, con- 
tinued unshaken to his last moments. He spoke 
of dearth with the most cheerful composure. The 
pleasing images of immortality sung by his own 
lofty muse recurred to his mind in the moment of 
trial, and whispered comfort to his spirit as it fled.— 
His soul had been undismayed at the symptoms of 
decay which increased every year* His strength was 
greatly diminished in the winter of 1802, but he 
Was still pleased with the visits of his friends. He 
frequently read his Messiah, but " think not," he 
once said to a friend, " that I now read it as a poet; 
I only occupy myself with the ideas it contains.*' . 



C 33 3 

His voice was remarkably pleasing, and he repeated 
his poems with much taste and feeling. To the last 
he loved to spealc of bis Meta^ and pleased himself 
with planting white lilies on her grave, because the 
lily was the most exalted of flowers^ and she was tho 
most exalted of women. He did not love to speak 
of the events which have lately disturbed the worlds 
but turned the discourse with pecitliar pleasure to 
the past scenes of his life. His retentive memory, 
the liveliness of his imagination^ and the elegance as 
well as force of his language^ made his representation 
of these scenes extrethely interesting to bis friends. 

In the last weeks of his life he secluded himself 
entirely, even from those who were most dear to 
him. He sent them many kind messages, but 
declined seeing them* Tranquillity of mind, res^« 
nation to the will df God, warm emotions of gratis* 
tude for the happiness he bad enjoyed in life, gentle 
endurance of the pains of death, a calm prospe£i: 
of the grave, and joyful expeSiations of a higher 
existence, these were now his sensations. The fair 
form of the Angel of Death, the exalted view of a 
better world, which bad fired the lofty ^minded youth 
to compose his sacred hymns, these now hovered 
round the head of the aged dying saint. In the 13th 



[ 34 ] 

eanto of the Messiah^ he has sung the happy close 
of a virtuous life' with unparalleled grandeur of de- 
scription. Such christian triumph attended him in 
the hard struggles of dissolution^ which grew more 
painful on a nearer approach. In the last and se- 
verest qonflift he raised himself on his couch^ folded 
his hands^ and with uplifted eyes pronounced the 
sacred words so finely illustrated in one of his Odes. 
^[ Can a woman forget her child, that she should 
not have pity on the fruit of her womb ? Yes, she 
may forget, but I will not forget Thee !" — ^The 
struggle was now over, he fell into a gentle slumber^ 
a{id atvoke no mor^* 

A solemn funeral, such as Germany bad never 
Witnessed for any man of letters before, hono\ired 
the venerable remains of Klopstocki The. following 
account of the awful ceremony was >vritten by one of 
his friends, and inserted in a Hamburgh newsp^per^ 
•dated Maifch ?9, 1803. 

*^ At t^n o'clock this morning, above seventy, 
coaches, assembled before the house of the deceased., 
This respeftable train consisted of the Diplonaatic 
Corps resident in the circle of Lower Saxony, the 
Members of our Senate, the Ministers of our Church, 
the Teachers of the Gymnasium and of St. John's, 



f 35 3 

titeratl^ Merchants, &c. Nqjlwithstanding the im- 
mense> concourse of people^ amoiijQLting to at least 
fifty thousand in the streets and niarko|p«place^ all 
interference of the police was unnecessary. An nut** 
versa! sentiment of awe supplied its place> and im« 
posed silence on an innumerable multltudeof people. 
The procession^ ' preceded and followed by a guiird 
of cavalry and infantry sent by the Senate^ followed 
the open hearse, drawn by four horses, on which 
stood the simple coffin, and proceeded through some 
of the principal streets to the gate which leads to 
Altona. At the gate the body was received by the 
first President of Altona, preceded by ten Marshals, 
and followed by many citizens and inhabitants^ 
among whom were many Members of the Senate, as 
well as celebrated Literati, foreign Generals, ^x^d 
other persons of distinction* They joined the respec* 
table train from Hamburgh, in jthe following order. 
• An escort .of Huflars. T\Vo Marshals in carriages, 
with a train of forty-five coaches* Between the 
Marshals went three young ladies, dressed in white, 
crowned with oak leaves and white roses, and car* 
rying wreaths of roses, myrtle, and laurel. The 
procession passed through 4he principal streets of 
Altona, to the grav% in the church-yard of the 

D 2 



C 3« 3 

Village of Ottensen. The corpse was every where^ 
met by oped demonstrations of respeft and love, 
atnd of grief for such an irrepariible loss. Thfc 
giirards by whom the procession pas^sed in both 
t6Wns, paid military honours^ and the ships in thi 
harbour had mourning flags. When the procession 
arrived at the grave, where it was received by 
Anisic of wind instruments muiBed, the cofEn wa* 
tkl^eh aS* the hearse, carried into the church, and 
placed before the altar. The noble poem bf the 
Messiah was laid on the coffin. A young man 

♦ 

stepped forward, and covered the open book with 
a laurel crown, while the 3roimg ladies from 
Altonalaid theirs on the bier. Then began the 
fitusical celebration performed by above an hun- 
dred musicraiis, together with many female sin- 
gers from different families in Hamburg. Stanzas 
and chorusses out of Klopstock's paraphrase of the 
Pater Noster, and his spiritual songs set to musicby 
Romberg and others, and out of Mo2tart*s mourhing 
cantata, resounded through the aisles, and added a 
ftiehing solemnity to the scene. During a pause in 
the* music. Dr. Meyer took the book from the coffin, 
and read, from the 12tH canto of the Messiah, the 
description ofihe death of Mary the sister of Lazarus, 



t 37 ]. 

GomfbrtiQg^ animating unages o£ death and immor-^ 
tality which had hovered round the death-bed of the 

pious Poet ! exalted thoughts of religion with which 

» 

his soul departed from this world 1 Then burst forth 
the chorus^ *^ Arise^ verily thou shalt arise !** 
during which the coffin was taken up and carried 
into the church-yard^ and after every sacred rite was* 
performed^ it was let down into the grave. 

A noble lime-tree over shadows it. Flowers^ the 
firstlings of the new awakened spring, were scattered 
over it. Pe^ce^ heavenly peace^ shall hover over 
this beloved grave. Ye men*of future generations^ 
men of genuine taste and feeling, ye will make a 
pilgrimage to this grave^ and pay to the manes of a 
inan who was the glory of his age^ and the pride of 
his nation, the offering of admiration and gratitudeji 
which we his friends and contemporaries by this 
day's ceremony can biit faintly express for our dear 
departed friend.'* 



The letters which the Editor had the honour of 
receiving from the venerable Dr. Mumssen of 
Altona, to whom she was indebted for almost the 
whole of the following colledion, will furnish some 



r 38 ] 

interesting particulars with regard to the cha« 
rafter of Klopstock; and it is presumed that they 
will be more acceptable to the reader, if presented in 
their original form. 



LETTER I. 

AltonA, near Hamburgh^ 
Madam, 1th Sept. 1804. 

I think myself highly honoured by your letter. It 
came from a delightful island,* which, though many 
years ago, I remember well. It was^ about this time 
of the year when I visited it, the evening sun and 
the harvest moon appearing in dire£t opposition 
above the horizon, on our walk to Carisbrook Castle, 
I could have built my chiteau en Espagne in that 
Island, and have made it my residence for ever. 

When I observed in the papers the publication of 
Richardson's correspondence, Mrs. Klopstock's 
letters occurred to my thoughts, for I remember 
Richardson's answers. 

* The Isle pf Wight. 



[ 39 J 

Very willingly will I look out for such materials 
as you desire for your friend^ if I can meet with 
such as will be proper for the preseiit time and taste. 
Klopstock certainly deserves to be more known to the 
English^ not only for his extraordinary genius as a 
sublime poet^ but also for his private virtues and 
amiable chara£l:er3 for he was the most agreeable 
companion in private life^ and his conversation was 
pleasant to all ranks and to every age : an- excellent 
classic^ and a great scholar in every branch of phi- 
losophy. I have lived above forty- five years in in* 
timate and uninterrupted friendship with him. I 
owe to hini some of my honourable connexions in 
the world; and having been so lucky as to meet with 
him in my youth^ I reaped great benefit from fol- 
Jowing his principles and moral red:itude. Besides 
bis Messiah and Odes^ &c. he has published several 
philological writings^ in which he appears as a gram- 
marian; and as such^ the German language owes id 
him her resurre£tion firom the barbarous ages. They 
suppose a reader versed in all the Northern as well as 
Greek and Latin dialers; and you may judge that 
even among scholars^ the number of such as can pro* 
tit or be entertained by them cannot be considerable. 
J remember that my for ever dear and lamented 



C 4f ] 

in your laudable endeavour^ in spite of those cold 
hypercritic^ that are a sad race of men every where* 

Fanny is the poetical name of Miss Schmidt^ a 
near relative of Klopstock. He never declared his 
passion to her^ for there was no prospeft of a nearer 
anion. She was afterwards married to a gentleman 
whose name I do not remember. The gentle youth, 
in the prime of life, inspired by religion, and in love 
with Fanny, applied in vain to Bodmer at Zurich fof 
an employment. These letters are lately published, 
and though certainly not intended for the press, they 
do honour to the feelings of his heart and the ardour 
of his mind. I intend to send you these letters by 
the first traveller whom lean entrust with the charge. 

We have as yet no biography of Klopstock to my 
mind. Professor Cramer (son to the late Chan- I 

cellor of the University of Kiel, Klopstock's intimate 
friend, he that published the Nordische Aufscber, a 
periodical paper in imitation of your Speftator) 
would be the proper person, being acquainted from 
his youth with Klopstock. He lives at Paris, and I 
remember that he collefied many curious circum- 
stances coticerning that extraordinary genius. 

Cidli is an imaginary name from the Messiah. 
Klopstock gave that name to Jairus's daughter. 



[ 43 ] ' 

atid that of Semida to4he youth of Nain, See the 
Episode in the Messiah. In his Odes he gives this 
name to his beloved Margaret Mdller. Meta is 
Margaretta contra<^ed. 

Klopstock's principal occupation was that of a 
grammarian, the comparative study of languages with 
regard to the German. I who saw him every day 
when in Hamburgh, found him always in pursuit 
of whatever is noble, sublime, and beautiful. He 
was a most agreeable companion. We used to call 
him *' den ewigen Jlingling," the youth for ever I 
He has lived free,t all his life time, and has 
recommended liberty on all occasions. His Bardits 
were intended to rouse the Germans from their apa- 
thy, and to inspire them and their pritices, even the 
Emperor Joseph himself, with the love of their 
country. Alasf he was much deceived in these 
hopes. Things have taken a different turn. — ^He 
kept up his gentle spirit, his religious principles, and 
his serenity of mind, till t]ie end of his life. His oh- 
sequies were like those of a great and virtuous prince. 
Hamburgh and Altona joined in the funeral pomp. 
Mozart's Requiem^ and some of his own sacred 

f Independent* 



/ 



I 

hymivs^ were sung in the churchi of Ottopsen^ where. 
he was interred under the bneautiful lime tree 
plapted on Meta's grave forty years ago^^ and which 
I have every day before my eyes. { W3is j;>re$.ent 
^hen it was planted* 

. This morning, July gd, Klopstpcl^*s birth-day, 
some friends ca^me to strew flowers on his grave. 
Mrs^ Hapbury will asseipble bis old friends at 
Flotbeob, where I am going tp celebrate his mempry^i 
for ever dear aatj sacred ! 

One of our friends last year read a lefture before 
4n assembly on some of bis Qdes, in which he fpl-r 
lowed the progress of his genius' through the sev,^ral 
stages of life. It is in Qerms^p^^ but as it may give 
pleasure and entertainmept to four friend, I will 
send it with the letters abovermentioned. Should 
I succeed in finding more ma^^rials, I will ta^&e care 
to send them in time. 



LETTER IV. i 

Altqndy Juljf S4, 1805. 
A Gentleman of Hamburgh will be so good to 
forward to you the pamphlet mentioned in my last 



I; 45 3 

lettet, which as it contains the letters written by,our ' 
ifivine poet to Bodmer will give pleasure both to 
your friend and yourself. These letters will certainly 
adorn your colIe£lion, and shew the world the de- 
licacy of his mind^ vand the virtue and magnanimity 
of his heart. I have not yet been able to procure 
the manuscript of another friend, which will illus- 
trate the progress of his genius through the difiereitt 
periods of his life. I hope to send you the Epitaph 
written by Count Frederick Leopold Stolberg, which 
is to be engraved on the. tomb-stone. Professor 
Cramer, whose name I mentioned in my letter, 
published twenty years ago a work entitled 'f KIop* 
stock, his person, his manners, and charaSber.'' 
Should your friend be curious to have it, I may send 
it by another traveller. &c. 



LETTER V. 

AltonajSept. 16, 1805. 

I HAVE the' honour to acknowledge the receipt 

of your very kind letter, and think myself very happy 

in the approbation which the materials relating to 

Klopstock's char^£ter have met with by yourself and 



[ 46 ) 

yoiir amiable friend. NoAuig can equal the plea- 
sure Lfeel^ that under your auspices the author of 
the Messiah v/ill o))tain justice in a nation that pro- 
duced a Milton. 

I have desired my bookseller in. Hamburgh to 
procure, and direft.to you, Cramer's '^ Klopstock er 
und liber ihn/^ You will find in it very interesting 
particulars. You will, besides this, and probably in 
a few dayQ, receive the small pamphlet composed by 
Hutwalker, a senator of Hamburgh. The author, 
who was very intimate with Klopstock a^d his 
writings, has tried.to trace the different stages of the 
divine poet's a<Siivity as near as possible from his 
own words. Mr. Hutwalker not intending this essay 
for the public, but only for Klopstock's friends, it 
may he regarded as a manuscript, and it will per* 
baps be found of service to your design. 

A near neighbour and most intimate friend of 
Klopstock, and thoroughly acquainted with all his 
writings, has given me the names of those letter 
writers which you are curious to know.* 

All these, except Mr. Funke, and the Countess 
Dowager BernstorfF, at Weimar, are now no more. 

* These will appear in Uieir proper places* 



[ « ] 

One of Klop8tock*$ brotbqrs^ Mr* Viftor Klopstock^ 
lives in Hamburgh. The epitaph will soon follow. 
, The political state of Europe has taken another 
turn . • , The fate of Germany, should it com^ 
to a continental war, will be dreadful. 

I recommend you, dear Madam, and your country, 
and all our friends, to God Almighty, in whom 
we trust for ever, &c. 

Saturday last, September 28, the tomb-stone of 
white Carrara marble was placed on the grave of 
her divine poet. It is crowned by two sheaves, and 
underneath averse of the Messiah-— 

« Seed sown by God, to ripen for the day of harvest.** 

In a niche the Celestial Muse, in one arm the cross^ 
her hand on an urn, her eyes and the other hand 
directed towards heaven. Alto relievo. 

THE EPITAPH. 

By the side of his Meta and his child, rests 

FREDERICK GOTTLIEB KLOPSTOCK. 
He was born July Sd, 1724*. 

He died March 14, 1803. f 

Germans, approach with veneration and lore 
the relics of your greatest poet. 



C 48 3 

• - ■ ♦ . 

"Approach, ye Christians, with grief and heavenly joy, 

the resting place of the sacred songster, ♦ 

Whose songi— ^r'-^Q^^ death, — pndsed Jssus CMbjst. 

He sung to men, in 'human strains, the Ecenie^i 

ibe Uivine Mediator. 

Near the Throne is placed his great r^waid^ 

A Golden Holy Cup filled with Christian tears. 

His second loving and beloved Spouse, 
JOHANNA ELIZABETH, 
'Erected this marble^ to .the. Gwde of her Yooth^ her 'Friend, 

her Husband. 

She waits in .'tears .die hour, that wilt, nUhere death shall'he no 

more, where the Lord will wipe off the tears of his beloved* 

unite her with him, and those whom she loved. 

Adore Him, who for us lived, died, and 

arose £rom the dead. 



V LETTER VI. 

Altona, Oct. 29, 1S05. 

WHEN I lately sent you the Epitaph^ time would 
not permit me to accompany it with some .observa- 
tions. The first four lines are indeed excellent. 
What follows is certainly honourable to him, and 



[ 49 ] 

ft 

well expressed^ but it will not be intelligible to many* 
The passage regarding the golden cup^ relates to one 
of Klopstock's Odes^ inscribed '* To the Redeemer,'* 
All who are unacquainted with those sublime poems^ 
will be unable to judge oiP what.is meant. 

'-^ — The navigation ia now restored again; 

1 wish it may remain so. Buonaparte has 

destroyed and taken almost the whole Austrian army. 
Unpardonable faults have been committed ; and if 
no unknown hero arises^ all will end in another and 

more ignominious peace. The misery of those 

^ • ■ 

countries, that are become the seat of war is beyond 

. . . * » , < • 

expression. After a bad harvest^ the unhappy in^ 
habitants will be deprived of every support. With 
sincere regard, andJiearty wishes of happier times^ I 
have the honour, &c. * 



LETTER VIL 



.JUona, Nov. 26, 1805. 
I Sincerely wish, dear Madam, that your amiable 
/riehd may be entirely recovered ; and in her conva* 
Icscence I hope she will take proper care of herself 

£ 



[ 50 ] 

in tbis cold season^ In order to become your assistant 
again in^ your honourable undertaking. My book- 
seller has sent Cramer's book. &c. &c. Whatever 
shall occur worthy of your attention, and fit for your 
design, will be sent by me from time to time. 

Britannia has obtained a glorious vi£iory, and \he 
Admiral ended nobly, and according to his wishes ; 
but Germany is ruined. Buonaparte, not a son of 
the waves, though born in an island, like Anteus 
the son of the earth, is invincible on the Continent; 
no Hercules appears to grasp him in his arms, and 
lift him from the ground. The capital of Austria 
is at his mercy. He has summoned the nobles of 
Hungary to Vienna, or to have their estates forfeited 
to the conqueror. May God have mercy on us in 
this part of the world; and may you, and all that 
are dear to you, enjoy health and happiness in your 
blessed island. 



LETTER VIII. 

Altona, May 6, 1806, 
IT is a long while, dear Madam, that I have no 
account either of yourself, or of our dear friends at 



t 51 ] 

Portsmouth. May you live In happiness, and enjoy 
all the blessings derived from religious principles and 

good intentions. ^The last winter has deprived 

me of two very dear friends — but not for ever ! 

Mrs. Klopstock has favoured me with part of a 
correspondence between Klopstock and Meta Moller, 
written in the year 1752, when they were promised 
to each other, and lovers in that period of life when 
the fire of imagination appears in its clearest and 
most sparkling light. You will be pleased with 
them, and admire with us, in the happy pair, the ele- 
vation of mind, the purity of their innocent passion, 
and their religious sensibility, far above the common 
conception, comprehensible only by minds like 
theirs, superior in virtuAyindour, and ingenuity. 

I perfefilly agree witf^ou about the times, and 
with regard to your late illustrious Minister. The 
late Count Bemstorflf, and all my noble friends in 
the diplomatic line, unanimously gave him a great 
chara£ter. He loved his country, and remained true 
to his principles from the beginning to the end. He 
might perhaps have been better acquainted with the 
whole continental state. ■ 

Most fortunately, and to my great pleasure, your 
sister is arrived here from Italy. I passed yesteiday 

s 2 



t 52 ] 

in her company at Mrs. Hanbury's^ where I might 
wish to see you all united^ if such a scheme could 
be realized in this world. It will be our happiness 
in a better state^ that those who agree in the love of 
truth and virtue^ will not be separated^ as we now 
are^ by such difficulties, 

' I remsun^with true respe& and affeAion^ &c. 



LETTERS 



FROM 



KLOPSTOCK to BODMER. 



/ 



Tq J« J* BODMgH. 



Langemahay Aug* \0, 1748. 

I Should long since have written to you^ zny dear 
Bodmer^ had I not been deterred by the praise 
with which you loaded me in your letter to Gartner, 
Unaccustomed to behold the threshold of Olympus, 
on which you placed me, I was overcome with shame. 
To have returned thanks, would have seemed as if I 
thought myself worthy o^ that for which I thanked 
you. As I believe you to be a good man, and to 
have spoken sincerely, so I would wish you to believe 
that I am sincere, and that I do not say any thing 



[ 54 ] 

6ut of feigned modesty. Let me therefore pass over 
this subje^^ and leave you to defend your opinion 
of me before the tribunal of critics. I will now tell 
you, — but hear me as a father hears his son^ — how 
I not only reverence but love you ; and what great 
services you have, unknown to yourself, already done 
me. When yet a boy, reading Homer and Virgil, 
/luid enraged at the German commentators, your 
criticisms and Breitinger's came into my hands. 
Having once read, or rather devoured them, they 
were always at my left hand, to be continually turned 
over while Homer and Virgil were at my right. 
How often I then wished, and still wish, for your 
promised Treatise on the Sublime! — But Milton, 

whom perhaps I should too late have seen, if you 

had not translated him, when accidentally he fell 

into my hands^ blew up at once the fire which had 

been kindled by Homer, and raised my soul to 

Heaven, arid the poetry of religion. Often did I 

then behold the image of an epic poet, such as you 

have described in your critical poem, and I looked at 

it, as Caesar on the bust of Alexander, in tears 5— 

how often then, 

<< Cum spes arredla jovenum exultantiaqne haunt 
« Corda paver pulsaos.'' Virg. 



[ 55 ] ' 

Such ate your services to me, but faintly sketched^. 
Yet greater (if you please) remain. The Messiah is 
scarce begun. If what I have sung deserve your 

attention^ I shall sing greater things hereafter. 

* 

** Major rerum mihi nascitur ordo» 
** Majus opus raoveo.*' Virg. 

But I want leisure ; and being of a very weak con- 
stitution^ and probably short-lived^ I have even now 
but little hope of finishing the poem. A laborious 
employment awaits me; with which oppressed^ what 

can I sing worthy of the Messiah ? My native coun- 
try neither cares, nor will care, for me; but see the 
road I have found out, by which, if you would go 
before me, I feel as if I might conquer fortune. 
There was amongst you a poet. Van Haarer, whom 
vyithout doubt you know ; he is in great favour with 
the Prince of Orange, who is said to be generous 
and magnanimous. What if he should give me a 
pension ? If you can do any thing to assist me in this 
business, excellent Bodmer, I know you will do it, 
but not as asking in my name ; for I would not beg 
my fortune of princes, though I would of Bodmer. 
I will now, trusting to the stri£test secrecy, intro- 
duce you to the interior of my most sacred thoughts. 



A 



[ 56 ] 



riove a tender holy maid, to whom ray third Ode i» 
addressed, with the most tender holy love 5 but she 
is not accessible to me, nor likely to be so, for for- 
tune separates us widely. Yet without her I am 

miserable, By Milton's shade, by thine own 

blessed infants, by thy own greatsQwl, I^ajdjlite thee, 
Bodmer, make me happy, if thou canst ! Farewell : 
salute most kindly in« my name Breitenger, Hingel^ 
and that good man 'to 'whom you inscribed an ode. 

This is written August 1.0, 1748, at Langensalza 
in Thuringia, where I am instrufting the son of a 
merchant, nam6d Weiss, (who will be a poet not 
unworthy of my pains;) where the greater ^pa^t of 

• * < 

my family reside, (more opulent than niy parents;) 
where dwells that heavenly girl whom I' love; the 
daughter of my mother's brother. Whatever you 
think likely to' be the event, whether there is any 

* « 

liope or not, write tome as soon as possible; that 

f- • ♦ ■ ■ 

my soul, struck by powerful love, love which is but 

• • . ■ « 

s » 

faintly traced in my Odes for it was impossible to' 
express it, may either be relieved from her anxiety, 
or totally depressed. ' The last^ would be more to- 

* » , ' w » • ' 

Icrable to me than this troubled* sea of uncertgun 
thoughts. Farewell, and love me. 



J > 



I 57 ] 



LETTER II. 



Sept. 27, 1748. . 
IT is a glorious reward for my poems_, to hear 
from one of the best of men that he is my friend. 
'How tenderly have you sympathized in my uneasi- 
4iess! I used to have so much greatness of mind as 
not to be miserable ; and now that I am so^ I find a 
friend who calls me back into myself; but yet I 
return with lingering steps, continually looking back. 
The sorrows of love are so great, that they deserve 
to have such power over me. She whom I love is 
now more cruel to me than when I first wrote to you. 
Yet your letter, the consciousness that my love is 
exalted and pure, and my sense of religion, prevent 
my being compleatly miserable. She Jcnows but 
little of my sentiments, or if she has discovered them, 
she does not let me know it, but she is capable of 

feeling them all. How would she feel your letter, 

> • 

if I had courage to read it to her ; and if she loved 

1 '*' • 

mei how would she look on me, with those eyes so 



[ 58 3 

full of soul ! She has a certain charaAer of beauty 
that distinguishes her from all others; I can no 
otherwise describe it to you at present, than by saying 
that it ex2L&\y corresponds with what I have said of 
her in my songs. Perhaps Laura, who sb thirsted 
for immortality^ was like her. Radichen belonged 
to this order of beauties^ though she was not like 
her. She is thus described in my Ode. 

*^ She is young and beautiful. — Unlike the flut- 
tering troop of rosy maids^ who thoughtless bloom^ 
by nature carelessly formed^ in sportive mood ; of 
feeling void, and void of mind, void of the all- 
powerful, all-subduing look of soul, the emanation 
of divinity. 

'^ She is young and beautiful. Her every move-^ 
ment speaks the heavenly temper of her mind ; and 
worthy, — ah! most worthy of immortal fame, she 
steps in lofty triumph forth, serene as the^unruffled 
air, bright as the dawn, full of simplicity as na- 
ture's self.'* 

I know not whether He whose will decrees mc 
so much suflering, sees here no happiness for me, 
where I imagine so much ; or whether, foreseeing 
that I am not yet capable of bearing such joy, he 
gives me time to grow more calm. Thus much I. 



C 59 1 

know— >I cannot change the slightest stroke on his 
eternal tables^ and I find much comfort in submit- 
ting myself to Him. I know too^ that to her whom 
I love so inexpressibly, I wish with my whole 
heart the purest happiness,-— even if she love me 
not again. You see I make you the confidant of my 
most secret thoughts. My other friends know no- 
thing of my sufferings ; even to my dear Schmidt I 
have said very little on the subjedi. 

I have communicated to my friends at Leipsic 
your proposal about the subscription. I expect to 
have the fourth and fifth cantos ready by ELaster, 
The first five cantos would make a volume. But 
with all your doubts, do you not still entertain too 
favourable an opinion of our nation? I believe they 
will need to be often awakened, before they will 
even observe that my Messiah ts in existence. 

You intend to review the Messiah in the language 
of Tasso. It is a great satisfa6i:ion to me to be made 
known to the admirers of Tasso and Michael Angelo. 
In my youth I never could hear the name of Tasso 
without reverence; and to see Michael Angelo's 
pid^ure of the Last Judgment, I would travel alone to 
Rome, Send me the review as soon as it is printed; 
every line of approbation from you is peculiarly pre* 



C 60 ] 

cious to me.*— —A perhaps too proud aversion to 
dedications is the cause that I beg you to consider 
whether it would not be best to send the Messiah 
with a private letter to the Prince of Wales 5* and 
perhaps this might be more conveniently and more 
eiTe^tually done by a stranger than by the author. 
Open your thoughts to me on this subje£l as freely 
as I write mine to you, and tell me whether you 
would undertake the task. 

The versification of the Messiah will offend many. 
t see it will take th«m a long time to find out that 
German hexameters in themselves, and particularly 
in a long poem, are more harmonious and sonorous 
than German Iambics. Those who are unacquainted 
with Homer will not be able to find their way; and 
yet nothing is required of them but to place the 
same accent on the words of an hexameter, that they 
would place on the words of an harmonious period 
in an oration. Some readers of Homer, who resem- 
ble the Grammarian Crist in Leipsic, will take it 
amiss of the German language that it is not the 
Greek language, and prescribe to the Germkn hex- 
ameter the rules of the Homerian. These people 
give general rules for the length and shortness of 

* Frederick Prince of Wales. 



i: «i 3 

Syllables according to the Greek language, insteail 
of which they should give them according to our 
own language. 

My love of an harmonious verse has led me to 
this digression. This is the reason too why I intend 
to alter many of my verses, and to be in future more 
attentive to harmony. 

I send you. another Ode, the produce of my love* 
She who could best reward it has not seen it, so 
timid does her apparent insensibility make me. I 
never proposed to myself to write Odes, 'and yet it 
ha$ so happened that I have made several. This 
however might be pardonable, if I had not exposed 
myself to the danger of appearing on the same 
theatre with Lange. 

The verses beneath the Ode are from the fifth 
book of the Messiah. They appear to me worthy of 
remark, because my beloved critic made me read 
them several times over to her. It would take too 
much room here to tell you the connection in which 
they stand. 

What is become of the excellent Kleist? Have 
his few hours of leisure drawn nothing more from 
his pen? I love him from my heart. I well re- 
member those hours, — it was a fine afternoon in 



/ 



r 62 3 

Autumn^ — ^whafi hearing his poems read made me 
so pensive. The afternoon was followed by an 
evening of the parest delight* I have passed many 
such evenings with my friends, but they are all over 
now, and I am left to the lonely sorrows of love. I 
was that evening full of happiness; and indeed the 
acquisition of a new friend deserved it. This even- 
ing reminds me of that on which Gaertner took 
leave of us when I had only just begun to know 
him, and with him his friends. In an Ode on my 
friends are these stanzas on that subje£i. 

*^ In those last hours ere thou didst part firomus, 
(to me that evening shall be ever sacred !) I learnt, 
ray friend, how virtuous souls, how the few virtuous, 
love each other. 

^* Full many s^n evening hour is yet in store,— 
ye future sons of men pass them not lonely j to 
fi-iendship consecrate those happy hours, and be your 
fathers youl' example.'* 

Gartner probably will not pass by Zurich to 
Geneva. He is separated from the Count, with 
whom he was to have travelled. He is a liberal- 
minded man, but very conscientious. 

Tell those worthy gentlemen who have so much 
compassion for Abbadona, that I am myself so 



[ 63 ] 

cpncemed for his fate, that I scarcely have sufEcient 
power over my heart to submit to the strift justice 
which is higher than our hearts. However, his 
story will not, I think, any where lay too strong 
hold on their tenderness. He is placed there for 
the glory of the Messiah. 

How happy shall I be, if by the completion of the 
Messiah I may contribute somewhat to the glory 
of our great and divine religion ! How sweet and 
transporting is this idea to my mind 1 That is my 
great reward ; and you, my dearest friend, point It 
out to me at a distance. I must here leave off. 
Midnight approaches, and I must give myself up to 
my silent sorrow and my tears. May my lovely 
. friend yet take that share in them which your letter 
bids me hope. Farewell ! 



LETTER III. 

Mr DEARBST Friend, 

Oct. 19, 1748. 

HOW deeply am I afre6ted by all your generous 

exertions in my behalf ^ and how well do you deserve 



*i* 



C 64 ] 

the whole friendship of my heart ! If you feel that yott 
Z&, nobly when you seek fortune for me as a means 
of happiness to yourself, I feel as strongly that I 
love you tenderly; and that any piece of good for- 
tune which you may receive from the hand of Pro- 
vidence and being to me, will be doubly precious 
in my eyes. The divine poet Young says in his 
Night-Thoughts, as well as I can remember the 
passage, ^' O God, thou hast made the world glo- 
rious around Thee! Thou hast brought forth the 
stars in their itiarvellous circles; but one tear of the 
virtuous, shed for the unfortunate, is greater than 
all these/'* /. 

I am sure you know me so well, that you will 
nor accuse me of a want of manly spirit in misfor- 
tune. My misfortune, indeed, consists only in this, 
that some outward circumstances disturb' me in the 

* I cannot find the passage in the Night-Thoughts to 
Ivhich Mr. Klopstock alludes* He says that he quoted by 
memory, and possibly he had an imperfe^ rccoUe^tioa of the 
following lines, jiear the conclusion of the Sixth Night* 
<* These are ambitious works, and these are great ; 
** But thi^, the le^st immortal souls can do. ' 

<« Transcend them all. Bat what can these transcend?- 

" Dost ask me what? — C)ne sigh for the distress'd.** 



f 64 ] 

possession of what I call happiness; (I take out of 
this account the pains of love;) but my eye is al« 
ready accustomed to these prospeds^ and I do not 
boast of any great' courage when I say that from a 
youth I have calmly and steadily looked my fate in 
the face. My parents^ who are very upright^ had 
property^ but without their fault they are become 
poor. Since they have no longer been able to 
provide for me^ my dearest friend Schmidt has 
supported me in the noblest manner, I have often^ 
observed the footsteps of Divine Providence in the 
midst of my ill-fortune^ and adored them. Know- 
ing this Providence, can I yet talk of misfortunes } 
I must be silent; but this I may say, that I very 
often wish for that sacred leisure, which I would 
gladly dedicate entirely to the completion of the 
Messiah. I wish for this leisure to enable me to 
express my thoughts immediately as they arise, and 
in the first warmth of their youth. I must now^ 
being disturbed, content myself with writing down 
some imperfe£t traces of these thoughts, and some 
few marks by which I may afterwards find them 
again ; but perhaps I shall never find them again 
in the same point of view, and with the same 
extent of nrospeS, as at firflt* You will easily see 



I OS ] 

that many other things in my poem depend on this 
leisure. But I leave this also to Providence. 



LETTER IV. 

Nov. Sf, 1748. 
1 Have waited hitherto that I might be enabled to 
tell you something decisive of my love, but this I 
cannot yet do. Your lettei^ to Miss Schmidt, which 
I shall ever preserve as a memorial of my perhaps 
unhappy passion, I have not given to her. Much as 
it delighted me, much as I wished to be able to give 
it her, and much as she herself would have prized 
it, I had not courage. I have sent it to bef bro» 
ther, to whom I have laid open my whole heart. 
He had previously written me a very affedlionate 
letter. He had tolc^ me that this love was what he 
had long in secret wished. He says, amongst 
other things, 

• << My friend I knew thy heart, I knew the Maiden's 
tenderness, 
"And therefore secretly I ask^d of Hcav'n to make 
her thine. 



r 6T ] 

He then' tells me a little story from which it 
appears that I am too timid. The most agseeable 
circumstance is that his sister iiad curiosity enough 
to break open the letter which was enclosed to her. 
Since I sent him your letter^ he has written to me 
with uncommon affection. He is really an admi- 
rable young man* He says my precious tears for 
his sister, and the interest which the whole future 
world will take in my favour^ make him iook on my 
love with reverential awe. I will not send you a 
large extra£): from his long letter. I will only tell 
you that he intends to write to his sister without 
disguise, and to send her your letter. I know not 
whether I can venture in the interim to give her the 
Alcaic Ode which I now send you. Happy should 
I be if I could have expressed in it all the sen- 
timents of my heart ! O how has this heavenly 
maiden captivated my whole soul ! — But I will say 
no more of her, lest I should express myself more 
feebly than I have done in the Ode. 

Ebert has translated Leonidas. The story of # 
Teribazus and Ariana has taken such hold on me^ 
that I seem to myself like the marble image on a 
hero's tomb -stone. 

F 2 



[ 68 3 

You will find among the latter pieces in this 
packet an Elegy, in which I was already thinking of 
iny Fanny. About the same time, that is about a 
year ago, I also composed the enclosed Ode toEbert^ 
as far as to the lines addressed to you. I will here 
break off my letter, as I am unwilling again to 
delay my answer. Perhaps it will not be much 
longer before I may be able to tell^you something 
decisive. If you love me, my dearest friend, pray 
Heaven to grant me my love. I should without 
lier be as unhappy as I am capable of being. 



LETTER V. 

Dee. dJ, 1748« 
I Write to you agsun to tell you that the fate of 
my love appears continually more doubtful. What 
a string of trifles, which however are far from being 
trifles to me, must I write to enable you to judge 
with any degree of certainty. I gave her this last 
Alcaic Ode when taking leave after a visit. I hjavc 
since spoken to her again. If I except a little cold- 
fusion, a slight blush, and some almost tender looks, 



C 99 I 

I do not know what impression the Ode has made^ 
Tf I did not know how uncommonly delicate are all 
her feelings^ and if she were not aware how well I 
know it ; if I were not acquainted with every liltla 
turn of her opinion on poems of similar import | 
but I will say no more, — I would rather be silent 
since I cannot entertain you with an Iliad's length 
of these dear trifles, I must await my fate^ though I 
have never yet found any thing more difficult; 

Qoalis populea mcerens philomela sub umbra 

Flet nodem. 

■ 

You wish to know the efie£t of the Ode on Salem. 
My timidity delayed to give it her^ and now I would 
not willingly present it after a much finer Ode. 

I send you a copy of Haller's letter. I have kept 
the original^ for what purpose yoii will easily guess* 
The better to understand the letter^ you must know 
that I was before in correspondence with Haller^ and 
that he had already^ as became sq worthy a man^ 
taken some trouble in Hanover to promote my for* 
tune by procuring me an employment^ Having 
declared that I would rather preside in a school than 
in an university, for nature has denied me the voice 
of an orator;* the last account I received was that I 
must apply to Gessner^ who would racommend me to 



C 70 J 

WenthofF; but I will not owe the smallest obli- 
gation to a man who is not ashamed of offending 
Haller. The Messiah may perhaps make my for- 
tune with the Prince of Wales, if it should become 
Known to Glover and Mallet, who have great weight 
with the Prince. 

Since I am so happy as to be allowed to lay open 
all my little concerns to you, I must tell you ^hat it 
has been hinted to me that it would not be unpleasant 
if after Easter I gave up my Tutorship. When love 
was my chief motive for coming here, I did not con- 
^ sider it so necessary/ to undertake such employmepts 
as T must do, if obliged to leave this situation with- 
out any other asylum. The change of my fortune 
through the means of Princes and Princesses is very 
uncertain. May I therefore venture to propose to 
you another trouble on my behalf? I have heard 
from a bookseller here, that a bookseller of Erlangen 
has enquired after me from him, in the name ofthe 
Academy. You know Mr. Le Maitre in Erlangen. 
I know not what could be the views of the Academy, 
but I will tell you mine. T should wish for an ex- 
traordinary professorship of some one of the liberal 
sciences. Rhetoric or Poetry in preference, with a 
stipend that should free me from the necessity of 



C n 3 

earning the- greater part of my Uving myself^ which 
would fall very bard on me; and i particularly wish 
for this in an academy whose number is not: yet very 
great. I might undertake such a post, till an op-- 
portunity more favourable to my leisure occurred; for 
for I am rather fearful that my poetic yqays will be 
sooner over than those of others. At least they 
probably will not extend to that age when Milton's 
began. 

Your Sketch of the Sublime I have formerly read. 
The wish I expressed to you extended to a further 
finishing of that sketch. I think it is worthy of you 
to surpass the great Longinus. Byt what would 
you do for examples^ if you had not the inimitable 
Prophets? If you can trust Kleist's poem on the 
Spiing to a transcriber, I know that you will not deny 
me the pleasure of reading it after so many pains. 
I also want to know whether the author of Noah, 
*^ who has the key that unlocks my heart,*' will 
finish his poem; and when and by whom Moses, 
which is mentioned in the friendly letters, was written? 

" Come, golden age; come thou who seldom deign*st 
" To visit Man, creative Genius come! 
'^ " Eternity's best child, 

•* Spread over us thy radiant wing.'* 



C 7« ] 

I would send what I have ready of the Messiah^ 
but that it is not yet returned to me from Leipsic, 
Ebert is gone to Gartner at Brunswick^ and he has 
probably taken it with him. None of our friends 
remain at Leipsic^ except Gellert and Rabener. 

The Last Judgment is thus introduced into the 
Messiah. Adam is with the arising saints. He is 
made to enquire of the Messiah concerning the fate 
of his race^ and at his own request will see a vision 
of the Judgment, The Catholics need fear no dis- 
turbance from me. Decide whether the following 
simile contradicts what I have just said. I can at 
all events leave it out. 



• So Satan spake: 

His heart was full of blackest thoughts; 
Peform'd and hideous was his inmost soul. 
The sinfiil spirit's most conceal'd recess. So li^ 
Before the face of God the gloomy vaults 
Of th' Iberian Inquisition. Wall In wall> 
Abyss upon abyss> deep in the earth, 
' And full of stifPning streams of guildess blood :--« 
Now the destroying Judge beckons his murderers; 
The iron doors re-echo to the depths 
Pelowy the cries of innocence to Heaven. 



i 79 y 

Oh ! could a Christian see these vaults of blood, 
Would he not look with fury on the judge, 
And clasp his h^nds, and weep^ and cry to God 
For jusuce? 

May I beg of you one thing which may perhaps 
appear to betray a little vanity: if it were so, I would 
frankly acknowledge it ^ but it is not that ; it is love. 
Love bids me beg of you to send me the Italian 
review of the Messiah while I remain here. Perhaps 
the divine Maiden may smile upon those trophies* 



LETTER VL 



' Q6ih Jan. 1749. 

Mr DEAREST Friend, 

AT a time when the Minister in Hanover is se- 
riously meditating, whether it would really be for the 
advantage of his Britannic Majesty's hereditary do- 
minions to give mesomedecent,andnot very laborious 
office; when the Messiah is perhaps lying in the 
anti-chamber where stands the bust of Pope, where 
Glover often passes j when it is, perhaps, because 



* 



C 7* ] 

not y^t handsomely printed^ laid aside by a Princess 
whose mother made the fortune of a woman only 

because she was Milton's daughter ; at such a 

time are you, my friend, so generous as to invite me 
to your land of liberty ! If this greatness of mind 
can be in any degree recompensed by knowing that 
I feel it in its full extent, 'tis well ; then take this 

trifling recompense. But suffer me to say some- 

thing more affeftionate to you, I will come to see 
you weep over the bones of your sons. I will come 
to wipe away the tears which perhaps I have caused 
to flow afresh; but you ipust also wipe away mine, 
for I must tell you that the destiny of my love is not 
yet unravelled. Now hope appears to smile upon 
me, and now all is doubtfuL I know not what you 
will think of the matter. Perhaps you would think 
differently, if I could relate all circumstantially. 
I will only say two things — that you must not find 
the least fault with my incomparable Fanny, nor too 
much with my timidity. I only tremble at the 
thought that she should in any degree mistake my 
charafter, and not give me credit for being deter- 
mined never to make her unhappy, even in the most 
trifling appendages of happiness. What peace I 
have hitherto enjoyed has been chiefly the conse- 



quence of the following thought. ■ Wheii by a taste / 
for virtuous deeds^ and by somie trifling good a£):ion9^ ' . 
which to us are hot difficulty though to the vulgar they > 
app^r soy we have made a shew of intending to be I 
virtuous; then Providence seizes. our whole heart; / 
and puts this great question ta us, whether we will f 
here too submit, whether we will be .virtuous even \ 
here 9 — You see that this is a very comprehensive \ 
thought, but yet, when I measure my love against it, ' 
I wonder that it has power to support me. Indeed 
I must frankly acknowledge that it alone does not, / 
Some little hopes at times appear so smiling, that I 

know not whether I can come to you, or when. 

Without my Fanny what would be to me your beau- 
tiful country, the cheerful society of your and(if I may 
dare to say so) my friends, the liberty and leisui'e I 
used so much to enjoy? T cannot deny it, I am 
sometimes astonished at the degree of tenderness I 
fee! for this angelia woman ; but I will say no more, 
nor write again on: the subje£i, till I can tell you 
something certain. I will send you, at another 
time, an Ode to God, which no one has yet seen.. 
M. Le Maitre has written to me. The Profes- 
sorship is of so little value, and at the same time is 
accompanied with so many iuconveniencies, that I 



C 76 1 

do not wish to qbtain it* You have made.this ex-- 
cellent man also my friend. With what affe&ion 
shall I embrace him when we meet ! I request you 
to send me the French Review. Not on my own 
account^ though I am much indebted to the author 
for his kindness, Fanny smiles when she finds me 
mentioned with approbation; and sometimes^ it 
escapes her, that she is on such occasions comparing 
me with the Briton,* 

I may be very well contented with my domestic 
circumstances. My little Weiss is a genius; but 

I 

he willy or must, ^PP^y to trade. He loves me very 
much. Haller/ as he knows that I am now in such a 
situation, has been endeavouring to discover pri- 
vately whether I would undertake to instruS; his son 
in the liberal sciences, and a letter has been given me 
to read, which he wrote on the subjeS; to a friend in 
this country. You know the embarrassments which 
make me now so irresolute. I will soon send some 
of the Messiah to be submitted to your criticism. 
When I can escape from my. cares, I sometimes 
finish a few lines. &c. 

• ^filton 



C 71 ] 



LETTER VII. 

jtipril 12, 1749. 
My dearest Bodmer, 
IT is indeed requisite that I should take a journey 
to you, if I would express the whole force of that 
friendship which I feel towards you. How sin- 
gularly noble, and how numerous, are the exertions 
which you make on my account. But I will quit 
this extensive field, for I must write a volume ful^ of 
tenderness, ifl would describe all the feelings of my 
heart towards you. This shall be the subje£): of my 
song when I shall be with you. — ^^ The little iClop* 
stock,'' as my Schmidt always calls me when his 
heart is full, will certainly visit you, and perhaps 
weep by your side tears of sweet pleasure. At pre- 
sent the all-powerful Fanny detains me, and I can be 
detained by her alone.— But you have betrayed my 
love to M. Le Maitre, and perhaps to Hagedorn. 
You may therefore depend upon it that I wil] not 
say a word to you about Fanny till my next letter^ 
and in the present I will call you to account about 



[ 78 ] 

an affair which arises from your treachery. You 
have^ as I have been informed^ permitted to be print- 
ed inthe FreimiithigeNachrichten* an Ode in which 
my love appears very evident. -What will become 
of me. What will Fanny say ? Geisecke has of- 
fended me much more, but perhaps you seduced 
him. He has allowed the Ode, ^^ When I am dead 
&c.'* to be printed in the 3d- vol. of the new col- 
leftion. Justify yourself on this important subjeft. 
•You must positively produce a satisfaftory apology. 
Haller has sent me a letter from an Englishman, 
which informs him that the Messiah was presented 
to the Prince; that he received it favourably, parti- 
cularly in consideration of Haller, and that he would, 
without doubt, enquire after the Author. I have 
upon mature deliberation resolved to write myself to 
Glover, who has great influence with the Prince. 
Had I not been in love, I might have suppressed this 
event. What is your opinion on the subjeft ? 

* A Periodical Paper printed at Berlin. 



C 79 ] 



LETTER VIIL 

17 th Mai/, 1749. 

FANNY has been to the Ftir* with her Brother, 
and by this means I have discovered that you had 
sent a packet for me to Rabener. I must mention to 
you, that there is no certainty of finding Rabener, 
except at the Fair : at any other time what you 
fend to him for me might be delayed a great while* 
Tell the friend for whose soul the Messiah is so 
exaftly calculated, that he has an advantage over me, 
because I have been entirely precluded ffom the no- 
velty and the ardour attendant on the first reading, 
A youth who sees for the first time an amiable young 
woman, and at once feels that shci was born for 
him, will feel more transport than the Mother who 
bore and educated her. — Tell him further that I 
particularly wish to know whether he is desirous 
that Abandona should be restored. to happiness* 

You have afforded me much pleasure by the poem 
of Kleist. Fanny also has read it, and with so much. 

• * At Leipsic^ 



C.80 ] 

interest that I could not avoid giving her the ma- 
nuscript. The passages respecting the Nightingale, 
and the divine Doris^ afle£ied my whole souK Kleist 
must absolutely compleat diis poem. &c. 



LETTER IX. 



1th JunCy 1749, 
1 Have now received your criticism. Continue-ta 
advise me^ for I feel a peculiar satisfa£liOn in being 
conduced by you into the track of new thoughts. I 
request from you and Mr. Breitinger some remarks 
on my three first cantos. I have determined that 
-ihey shall be printed with two new cantos, to com- 
pose altogether the first volume. What do you now 
think in regard to your former proposal of a sub- 
scription^ and how ought it to be arranged ? Several 
booksellers solicit me for the publication of the work. 
J send you an Ode which no one has seen, not 
even Fanny or her brother. I composed it before 
the commencement of this year. It has often been 
the companion of my solitary hours } and you will 



I 81 ] 

m 

discover from the subjed: why Fanny and Schmidt 
have not obtained a sight of it. Now, do you wish 
to know the fate of my love ? I can tell nothing more 
than that it now appears probable thait I am beloved. 
You will believe that this probability is of no little 
importance ta me. How happy should I be if I 
could speak with confidence ! Very much of what 
I consider as my happiness depends on this. How 
important many things now appear to me, which I 
before considered as trifling. I know that you will 
do all you can for me in this affair ; and how dea^ 
will you be to me for so doing. 

Belov'd by her, my heart will glo^ 
Widi warmer love for you. 

Perhaps my becoming known to the English may 
open for me a surer path. Hagedorn thinks that, 
by the assisflsince of Van de Hoek in Gottingen, I 
should send a copy to the translator of Haller in the 
Gentleman's Magazine. Will you be so kind as to 
write to Haller on the subjeS, but in such a manner 
as that I may not be suspefted of suggesting it) I 
know not whether I may not alter my determination 
to write to Glover. &c. 



C.M J 



LETTER X. 

■ ! 

NiTO. 28, 1749. 
Mr DEAftEST BODM&R, 

I Should not so long hxrt deferred Meriting to you> 
if my friend Schmidt had not been with mty and ^ 
I had not again been doubtful what answer I could 
give you TCSpoAing my journey, I hav>e spent many 
golden days with him. Now^ however, I have the 
satisfaftion to assure you, that in the spring I will 
tell you all* I rejoice in the sweet names of Bod- 
mer, Breitinger, and Hess,-T-in the prospect: of lei- 
sure and friendship 3 and I listen, as Schmidt says, 
to the whispers of these delightful thoughts, But 

now learn the conditions on which I shall con^e to 

» 

you. My presence must be almost unobserved in 
your house. You must not make the smallest al- 
teration on my account. This b«ng premised, and 
decided as if you had given me the pledge of friend- 
ship in the golden age of the world, I will coine. 
I am already well acquainted in idea with a certain 
country which I call Zurichia. Perhaps I may have 
formed a mistaken notion of it; but in the mean 



^99 



t ss 3 

while I please myself with imagining a country 
more beautiful than any other in the world. Ac- 
cording to my ideas there belong to a fine country—- 
mountains, vallies^ lakes^ and what is far preferable^ 
the abode of friends. How distant^ and in what 
situations, dwell Breitinger, Hirzel, Waser, Ischar- 
ner? And I must ask another question, wjtiich is 
conneQied with the country in regard to me^ 

^* Since now my life has reached ilie prime of youth, 

How near are you to any young ladies of your 
acquaintance, into whose society you may think I 
could be 'admitted? The heart of a young woman 
is ati 'extensive sc^e of nature, into whose labyrinth 
a poet must frequently penetrate, if he wishes to 
.acquire profound knowledge. But these young 
ladies must not be made acquainted with my history^ 
lest they should put a restraint upon themselves 
without reason. This without reason attaches no 
censure to these amiable unknown beings. Even if 
they ^irere to resemble Fanny, they would find, not- 
withstanding, that I wiU love only once in my life** 

* Noteiif the German Editor^ — " I will love only once.*'— 
<« The reader will be surprised at this saltomortalef when he 
compares it with' Klopstock's hopes expressed in the ninth 

o 2 



V 



IB*} 

I have been sensibly affe&ed by Henzi's deatlv; 
indeed death never before touched me so pearly. 
Perhaps I am too severe* on this occasion. I can in 
some degree pardon him who at the hour of death 
pre/^/u/^ to jest, because such an attempt indicates 

• • ■ / 

» f 

letter. We might easily fill up the blank with well-known 
tales of what occurred in the history of his love between 
June and- November 1749 $ bat we here publish only what i» 
undoubtedly authentic^ with an assurance that what we con- 
ceal would not bring the least dbgrace on the heart or the 
chara<fter of our immortal Poet.'* ■ 

The English Editor regrets that the German was not 
. more communicative on this interesting subjedt. It appear^ 
however, that the reluctance which Klopstock felt to involve 
the woman he lovedf and the sister of his dearest friend^ in 
difficulties from which he was in vain endeavouring to ex* 
tricate himself, prevented any proposal of marriage, notwith* 
standing the encouragement given by that generous friend^ 
on whose bounty the unfortunate lover was at that time 
dependant. The lady was soon afterwards married; and 
Mrs. Klopstock's letters to Mr. Richardson will perhaps be 
thought to furnish a sufficient apology for the poet, if it 
ihoidd appear that after three years, in which " he did what 
he could to die in a love cause,"*" he was at last induced to 
break the resolution contained in his last letter to Bodmer. 

* Shakespeare. 



r 



f 85 J 

that his mind is far from being in a tranquil state ; 
but he who can jest so naturally as Henzi^ <>ught to 
employ his superior powers of mind in something 
more noble. It must be^ because the events of 
futurity ^appeared to him uncertain, that he was re 
solved at all events to carry his mirth to the gates of 
Heaven. Peace to the soul of Henzi. I praise bim^ 
for his composure ; but I should praise him with 
more warmth and earnestness, if he had said, like 
Lord Kilmarnock^ *' Ah, Forster, it is, however, 
very terrible!" ^ 

The Ode in the sixth volume of the miscellaneous 
collection, ^^ As in solitary night,^* &c, is by 
Schmidt. How do you like Chevy- Chase, and the 
imitation of it, published in a former volume?— 
Your translation of the Ode, ^* When I am dead,** 
has revived my former love for the Greek language 3 
and in the height of my ardour I have translated the 
enclosed Strophes. Perhaps you may not find them 
much in the spirit of the original ; but perhaps 
Alcaeus himself would not have written better, had 
he been in a similar situation. ■ 

Since I cannot yet fix the time of my departure 
from this place, I will write to you again either from 
hence^ or from Leipsic. I shall be happy to have 



C se J 

H. SchoMicM for my Iravelting comparooiu I have 
found in Hanover a noble friend^ who will endeavoar 
to transmit the Messiah to the Prince to whom it is 
dedicated^ through a Mr. Von Scbrader^ whe knows 
his Royal Highnesses tempwafandi. I am as sin* 
cerely an enemy to dedications^ as I am^ with my 
whole hearty your friend* 

F. G. KLOPSTOCK. 



SB 



C w ] 



e fbHowifig letters were puUiahed in the Corretpoiidefiee 
of Mr. Ricbardooiii a&d the ingenious Editor of that 
work was qot mistaken in supposing that they would in* 
terest every feeling heart. She adds, ** It is presumed 
that leaders of taste will not wish that Mrs. Klopstock's 
letters had been put into better English." 



LETTER I. 



Mrs, Klopstock to Mr. Richardson. 

Hamburgh, Nov. 29, 1757. 
Honoured Sir, 
TT TILL you permit me to take this opportunity, 
^ ^ in sending a letter to Dr, Young, to address 
myself to you ? It is very long ago that I wished to 
cb it. Having finished your Clarissa, (O the heavenly 
book!} I would have prayed you to write the history of 
a manly Clarissa; but I had not coun^e enough at 
that time, I should have it no more to-day, as this 
is my first English letter, but I have it 1 It may 
be, because I am now KJopstock's wife, (I believe 



l 88 i 

you know my husband by Mr. Hoborst^) and then 
I was only the single young girl.^ You have since 
written the manly Clarissa, without my prayer. O, 
you have done it to the great joy and thanks of all 
your happy readers. Now you can write no more, 
you must write the history of an arigel. 

Poor Hohorst ! he is gone. Not killed in the 
battle, (he was present at two,) but by the fever. 
The Hungarian Hussars have taken your works, with 
our letters, and all that he was worth, a little time 
before his death. But the King of Prussia recom* 
pensed him with a company of cavalry. Poor 
friend ! he did not long enjoy it ! He has made me 
acquainted with all your lovely daughters. I kiss 
them all, with my |)est sisterly kiss ; but especially 
Mrs. Martha, of whom he says, yhe writes as her 
father. 'I'ell her in my name, dear sir, if this l|e 
true, that it is an affair of conscience not tq let print 
her writings. Though I am otherwise of the sen* 
timent, th^t a woman, who writes not thu$, pr as 
Mrs. Rowe, sl^puld never let print her works. Will 
you pardon me thi^ first long letter. Sir ? Will you 
tell me if I shall write a second ? 

I an^) honoured Sir, your most bumble servant, 

M. KLOPSTOCK. 



f 



t 89 3 



LETTER II. 



To Mr. Richardson. 



Hamburg^ March 14, 1738. 
YOU are very kind, sir, to wish to know every 
thing of your Hamburg kindred. Then I will obey, 
and speak of nothing but myself in this letter. I 
was not the lady who hath been with two gentlemen 
from Gottenburg in England. If I had, never would 
I have waited the cold ceremony of introducing you 
to me. In your house I had been, before you knew 
that I was in England. That I shall, if ever I am so 
happy as to come there. We had a pretty projeft 
to do it in the spring to come, but I fear that we 
cannot execute it. The great fiend of friendship, 
war, will also hinder this, I think. I fear your Anti« 
gallicans exceedingly, more than the Gallicans them- 
selves; they, I must confess it, are at least more 
civil with neutral ships. I pray to God to preserve 
you and Dr. Young till peace comes. We have a 
short letter of Dr« Young, in which he complains of 



[ 90 ] 

his health. How does he yet? And you, who are 
a youth to him, how do you do yourself? 

You will know all what concerns mel Lpve, 
dear sir, is all what me concerns, and love shall be 
all what I will tell you in this letter. In one happ^ 
night I read my husband's poem, the Messiah. I 
was extremely touched with it. The next day I 
asked one of his friends^ who was the author of this 
poem ? and this was the first time I heard Klopstock's 
name. I believe I fell immediately in love with him; 
at the lez^t^ my thoughts were ever with him filled^ 
especially because his friend told me very much of 
his charaSier. But I had no hopes ever to see him„ 
when quite unexpectedly I heard that he should pass 
through Hamburg. I wrote inimediately to the 
saofe friend for procuring by. his means that I might 
see the author of the Messiah, when in Hamburg. 
He told him that a certain girl in Hamburg wished 
to see him, and, for all recommendation, shewed 
him some letters in which I made bold to criticize 
Klopstock's verges. Klopstock came^ and camic to 
me. I must confess, that, though greatly prepos* 
sesscd of his qualities, I never thought him the ami- 
able youth whm 1 found him. This jn^de its effeA. 
Aftef having seen him two hours, 1 \Yas obliged to 



r 



I 



C 91 1 

pass the evening m a company which never had been 
so wearisome to me. I could not speak; I could 
not play; I thought I saw nothiog but Klc^stock. 
I saw him the next day, and the following^ and we 
were very seriously friends; but on the fourth day 
he departed. It was a strong hour^ the hour of bis 
departure. He wrote soon after, and from that time 
our correspondence began to be a very diluent one. 
I sincerely believed my love to be friendship. I 
spoke with my finends of nothing but Klopstock^ and 
shewed his letters. They raillied me^ and said I was 
in love. I raillied them again, and said they must 
have a very friendshipless heart, if they had no idea 
of friendship to a man as well as a woman. Thua 
it continued eight months, in which time my friends 
found as much love in Klopstock's letters as in me. 
I perceived it likewise, but I would not believe it. 
At the last Klopstock said plainly that he loved; and 
I startled as for a wrong thing. I answered that it 
was no love, but friendship, as it was what I felt 
for him; we had not seen one another enough to 
We; as if love must have more time than friend- 
ship 1 This was sincerely my meaning, and I had 
this meaning till Klopstock came again to Hamburg. 
This he did a year after we had seen one another the 



[ 92 3 

first lime. We saw, we were friends; we loved, 
and we believed that we loved; and a short time 
after I could even tell Klopstock that I loved. But 
we were obliged to part again, and wait two years for 
our weddihg. My mother would not let me marry 
a stranger. I could marry without her consentment, 
as by the death of my father my fortune depended 
not on her ; but this was an horrible idea for me ; 
and thank Heaven that I have prevailed by prayers ! 
At this time, knowing Klopstock, she loves him a& 
ber lifely son, and thanks God that she has not 
persisted. We married, and I am the happiest wife 
in the world. In some few months it will be four 
years that I am so happy ; and still I dote upon Klop- 
stock as if he was my bridegroom. If you knew my 
husband, you would not wonder. If you knew his 
poem, I could describe him very briefly, in saying he 
IS in all respe£);s what he is as a poet. This I can say 
with all wifely modesty ; but I dare not to speak of 
my husband; I am all raptures when I do it. And 
as happy as lam in love, so happy am I in friendship; 
in my mother, two elder sisters, and five other 
women. How rich I am ! Sir, you have willed that 
I should speak of myself, but I fear that I have done 
it too much. Yet you see how it interests me, I 



[ 93 ] 

ha?e the best compliixvents For you of my dear hus- 
band. My compliments to all yours. Will they 
increase my treasure of friendship ? I am, Sir^ your 
.humble servant^ 

M. KLOPSTOCK. 



LETTER III. 



To Mr. Richardson. 



Hamburgy May 6, 1758. 
IT is not possible to tell you. Sir, what a joy your 
letters give me. My heart is very able to esteem the 
favour that you, my dear Mr, Richardson, in your 
venerable age, are so condescending good to answer 
so soon the letters of an unknown young woman, 
who has no other merit than a heart full of friend- 
ship, and of alt those sentiments which a reasonable 
soul must feel for Richardson, though at so many 
miles distance. It is a great joyful thought, that 
friendship can extend herself so far, and that friend- 



[ 9* 3 

ship iiAs no netAofseeif^f though this ^eing would 
be celestial jtff to hearts like ours, (shall I be so 
procid to 3ay ours f) and what wiH it be when so 
many really good souls, knowing or not knowing in 
this world, will see one another in theiuture^ and be 
ihtre Jriends 1 

It will be a delightful occupation for me to make 
you nlore acquainted with my husband^s poem. 
Nobody can do it better than I, being the person who 
knows the most of that which is not published, being 
always present at the birth of the young verses, which 
begin by fragments here and there, of a subjefl of 
which his soul is just then filled. He has many 
great fragments of the whole work ready. You may 
think that persons who love as we do, have no need 
of two chambers: we are always in the same : I with 
my little work, still, still, only regardii^ sometimes 
my husband's sweet face^ which is so venerable at 
that time, with tears of devotion, and all the sub- 
limity of the subje<9;. My bushand reading me 
his yonog vorses, and suffering iwy criticisms. 
Ten books_ are published, which I think probably 
the middle of the whole, J will as soon as I can 
translate you the arguments of th«se ten ibook^ and 
what besides I think of them. The verses of the 






[ 95 ] 

{wem are wicboat rhymes^ and are lie^tameters; 
which sort of vereei my husband has been the first 
to introduce in our language^ we being diUl closely 
attached to rfaymes and iambics. I suspeft the 
gentkman who has made you acquainted with 
the Messiah is a certain Mr. Kaiser of Gdttingen> 
who has told me at his return from England^ what 
lie has done^ and he has a sister like her whom you 
describe in your first letter. 

And our dear Dr. Young has been so ill ! But be 
is better. I thank God^ along with you. O that 
his dear instructive life may be extended^ if it is not 
against his own wishes 1 I read lately in the news- 
paper that Dr. Young was made Bishop of Bristol. 
I must think it is another Young: how could the 
King make him cnly bishop, and Bishop of Bristol^ 
while the place of Canterbury is vacant ! I think the 
King knows not at all that there is a Young who 
illustrates his reign. And you, my dear dear friend, 
have not hope of cure of a severe nervous malady ! 
How I trembled when I read it I I pray to God to 
giv^ you, at the least, patience and alleviation. I thank 
you heartily for the cautions you give me, and my 
dear Klopstock, on this occasion. Though I can read 
very well your hand-writing, you shall write no raortt 



C 9« ] 

if it is incommodious to you. Be so good to diAate 
only to Mrs. Patty; it will be very agreeable to have 
so amiable a correspondent ; and then I will^ still 
more thiui now^ preserve the two of your own band* 
writing as treasures. I am very gkd. Sir, you will 
take my English as it is. I know very well that it 
may not always be English^ but I thought for you it 
was intelligible* My husband asked, as I was 
writing my first letter, if I would riot write French ? 
No, said I, I will not write in this pretty hut Jade 
language to Mr. Richardson, . though so polite,' so 
cultivated, and no longer Jade in the month of 
Bossuet. As far as I know, neither we^ nor you> 
nor the Italians, have the word Jade. -How have 
the French found this chara&eristic word* for their 
nation ? Our German tongue, which only begins to 
be cultivated, has much more conformity with the 
English than the French. 

I wish. Sir, I could fulfill your wish of bringing 
you acquainted with so many good people as you 
think of. Though I love my friends dearly, and 
though they are good, I have however much to pai*- 
don^ except in the single Klopstock alone. He is 
good, really good, good at the bottom, in all hia 
adions, in all the foldings of his heart. I know 



[ 97 ] 

him; and sometimes I think if we knew others in 
the same manner^ the better we should find them 5 
for it may be that an action displeases us^ which 
would please us if we knew its true aim and full 
extent. No one of my friends is so happy as I am ; 
but no one had courage to marry as I did. They 
have married, as people marry ; and they are happy^ 
as people are happy. Only one, as I may say, my 
dearest friend, is unhappy, though she had as good a 
purpose as myself. She has married in my absence ; 
but had I been present, T might, it may be, have been 
mistaken ia her husband as well as she. How long 
a letter this is again ! But I can write no short ones 
to you. Compliments from my husband, and com. 
pliments to all yours, always, even though I should 
not say it. 

M. KLOPSTOCK. 



H 



C ^8 ] 



LETTER IV. 



To Mr. Richardson. 



Hamburg, Aug* 26, 175S. 
WHY think you. Sir, that I answer so late? I 
will tell you my reasons. But before all, how does 
Miss Patty, and how do yourself? Have not you 
guessed that I, summing up all my happinesses^ an4 
not speaking of children, had none? Yes, Sir, this 
has been my only wish ungratified for these fouj? 
years. I have been more than once unhappy with 
diisappointments; but yet, thanks, thanks to God, 
t am in full hope to be mother in the month of 
November. The little preparations for my child and 
child-bed (and they are so dear to me !) have taken 
so much time, that I could not answer your letter, nor 
give you the promised scenes of the Messiah. Thig 
is likewise the reason wherefore I am still here, for 
properly we dwell at Copenhagen. Our staying here 



[ 99 ] 

is only a viek, but a long one, whioh we p^y my 
funily* I not being able to travel yet, my bu^bafl4 
bae been obliged to make a little voyage to Copen* 
bagen. He is yet absent j — a (^loitd over my hap-» 
pinje&9 ! He will soon retufn ; but what does that 
hielp ? He is yet equally absent. We write to each ' 
other every post, but what are rettess to presence I \ 
But I will speak no more of this little cloud; I will 
only tell my happiness. But I cannot tell you how 
I rejoice ! A son of my dear Klopstock's ! O when 
shall I have him ? It is long since I have made th^ 
remark that geniuses do not engender geniuses; no 
children at all, bad sons, or, at the moatj lovely 
daughters, like you and Milton. But a daughter or 
a son, only with a good heart, without genius, I will/ 
nevertheless love dearly.- 

I think that about this time a nephew of mine 
will wait on you. His name is Witelhem, a young 
rich merchant, who has no bad qualities, and several 
good, which he has still to cultivate. His mother 
was' I think twenty years older than I, but we 
other children loved her dearly like a mother. She 
had an excellent character, but is long dead. This 
is no letter, but only a newspaper of your Ham- 
burg daughter. When I have my husband and 

H 2 . 



1 



[ 100 ] 

my child^ I will write you more^ if GoD gives me 
health and life. You will think that I shall be not 
a mother only^ but a nurse also ; though the latter 
(thank God that the former is not so too !) is quite 
against fashion and good-breeding, and though 
nobody can think it possible to be always with 
the child at home, ' 

M. KLOPSTOCK. 

Note.''^Mrs. Klopstock died on the 28th of November ' 
1758. 



POSTHUMOUS WRITINGS 



OK 



MARGARET KLOPSTOCK, 



PubUihed at Hamburgh in the year 1759. 



IntroduLCtion^ by F. G. Khpstock. 

T^EATH has deprived me of her whose affeftiOQ' 
made me as happy as she was ipade by mine. 
Our friends well know with what tenderness we 
loved,— The following pages will shew why I am 
compelled^, and willingly submit^ to refrain from all 
complaint. This is one reason why I shall not write 
a poem^ which many have exped:ed from vat, even 
when I may be more capable of it than I am at pre- 
sent. I think that^ before the public^ a man should 
speak of his wife with the same modesty as of him- 
self; and how prejudicial would the observance of 



[ 102 ] 

\ his principle be lo the enthudasm required in poetry. 
The reader, moreover, and not without reason^ 
thinks himself justified in refusing implicit credit to 
the panegyrist of his beloved, and my love for her 
who made me the happiest of men, is too sincere to 
let me alldw my readers to call it iii question. Ano- 
ther circumstance which makes poems of this kind 
uninteresting is diat we have too m4ny of them. 
As th^se considerations would have restrained my 
pen, even if my departed friend had left nothing that 
could be communicated to the world, it will easily be 
imagined what pleasure it must be to me to have the 
power of publishing somelittle Manuscripts by which 
she ere£ls a monument to herself. I am so proud 
of her doing this with her own hand, that I will nc^ 
add to the colledlion the Odes I formerly wrote to 
her. Should this pride require forgiveness, I hope 
to obtain it, when it is recolleSed that I am not proud 
of myself, but only of my friends. 

I have nothing more to say of these little pieces 
than that they were not written with the intention 
of erefting a monument to herself. Some subjefls 
are particularly interesting to us 3 we write our 
thoughts on them, and perhaps shew themHo a few 
friends, without ever thinking of publication. It is 



C 103 3 

tbove two years since she thus began to write 
down some of her favourite ideas during my absence^ 
and she was confused and distressed when I sur- 
prised her at this employiaient, and prevailed with 
her to read to me whit she had writien.-— O she 
was all the happiness of my life ! What have I not 
lost in losing her 1 But I will not complain, 

I shall perhaps at some future time print some of 
her letters^ or at least some fragments of (hem. I 
^an publish only a few of them^ having some hours 
sdfter hier death burnt most of those which we wrote 
to each other before our^narriage, I was led to do 
this by the idea that I might be tempted to read 
tfaeni^ and that they would agitate me too much. I 
have since found some which had been kept in a dif- 
ferent pUce^ and I will beg my friends who have 
letters from her to send them to me. My intention 
is^ as I have already said^ to publish them. Some 
friends of virtue may perhaps be anxious to know 
more of this heavenly mind. 



t 104 ] 

Extracts from the Correspondence between Klop- 
stock and Margaret Mdller, when their marriage 
was delayed, and he left her to return to Copen^ 
hagen, in Oct. 1755. S^e page 22. 



LETTER L* 

I Must write to you this evening, and you shall 
&)4 my letter at Copenhagen. Best of men^ 
you ought to find in me a wife desirous to imitate you 
as far as it can be possible. I will — indeed I will, 
resemble you as much as I can. My soul leans 
upon yours. — ^This is the evening on which we read 
your Ode to God. Do you remember it ! If I can 
preserve as much fortitude as I have acquired this 
evening, I will not shed a Ifear at our parting. You 
will leave me, but I shall again receive you, and re-* 
ceive you as your wife. Alas! after another day you 
will be gone far — far from me, and it will be long 
before I see you again; but I must restrain my- griefs 

♦ This letter was written before Klopstockleft Hamburg, 
and received by him at Copenhagen, 



[ 1^5 ] 

God will be with you^ your God and mine. When 
you are gone I shall be more firm than I am now^ as 
I have already assured you. I trust in our gracious 
GoD^ that Ele will restore you to me^ that He will 
make me happy. He knows that through you I shall 
be continually improving, be has already bestowed 
on us so much happiness^ that I trust He will com- 
plete our felicity. Begin then your journey, only 
let me weep, — indeed T cannot help it. May God be 
with you ! O my God, it is Klopstock for whom I 
pray. Be thou with him ; shew thy mercy to me 
in granting this request. If my gratitude can be 
acceptable to Thee, Thou knowest how grateful I am. 
O thou All -Merciful, how much felicity hast Thou 
already vouchsafed to me; felicity for which I could 
not have presumed to ask. O still be gracious to me^ 
to my Klopstock. I recommend him to Thee t 



LETTER n. 

I Have you no longer, my Klopstock ; you arc 
already far from me. May you but be safe ! What 
are you doing now ? I wish I could answer that 
question. But I know, at least I hope so. You 



[ 106 ] 

tift well j you are tranquil, you are thinking of your 
Meta, of your ever beloved Meta, You are thinking 
of me, as I am ever thinking of you; for your heart 
attd your affeftion is like my own, I could not 
iave imagined that absence would be so very heavy. 
What is life without you ? but what is life with you? 
Now all femitids me of the lime which is mine no 
more; of my happiness in having always near me 
my best beloved friend, who loves me so tenderly. 
Alas ! 1 shall not see you again for a long long time ; 
but if I knew that you were safely arri>6Bd at Copen- 
hagen, I think I should be easy, ^es, my Klop- 
stock, be assured that I am as tranquil as I can 
j!K)ssibly be in your absence. I am for ever yours ; 
you love me, and I spare myself for your sake. I 
wish you could see how I restrain my tears. Our 
friends are very kind, and watch me tenderly. They 
endeavour to rgnder every thing as pleasant to me as 
they can ; but what is all this without you ? I am 
expecting Schmidt, who yesterday brought me your 
last farewell, and told me how much you had wished 
to return from the Post-House. My best friend, 
farewell 1 My constant prayers attend you. 



[ 107 3 



LETTER III. 
Klopstock to Meta. 

YESTERDAY the same accidentwhich happened 
lately to your letter occurred again. I arn not, how* 
ever, uneasy, for I am sure that you have written to 
me. With what transport do I think of you, my Meta, 
my only treasure, my wife ! When in fancy I 
behold you, my mind is filled with the heavenly 
thoughts which so often fervently and delightfully 
occupy it; and while! think of you, they arestill more 
fervent, more delightfuK They glow in my breast, 
but no words can express them. You are dearer to 
me, than all who are conneAed with me by blood or 
by friendship, dearer than all which is dear to me 
besides in the creation. My sister, my friend, you i 
are mine by love, by pure and holy love, which Pro- ' 
viderice, (O how grateful am I for the blessing !) has 
made the inhabitant of my soul upon earth. It 
appears to me that you were born my twin sister in 
Paradise. At present indeed we are not there, but 



^ 



[ 108 } 

we shall return thither. Since we have so much 
happiness here^ what shall we have there ? 

Remember me to all our friends. My Meta, my 
for ever beloved, I am entirely yours. 



LETFER IV. / 

Meta to Klopstock. 

I Could not write to you till this moment, my 
beloved Klopstock ; lam in such good health, that I 
havebeen out every day, and am now returned from 
Schmidt's house to this. With the most perfed: 
sincerity I assure you that I have not been so well 
since 1749, as during the last week. Imagine how 
much I must feel in the hope that I am thus restored 
for you. I did not expe6l to be ever again as well 
as I am now. Praised be our God for it ! and you 
will praise Him with me. Yesterday evening, when 
I had retired from company, and enjoyed a very 
d:;lightful hour, I said to myself, perhaps my Klop- 
stock is now worshipping God with me, and at that 



[ 109 ] 

thought my devotions became more fervent. How 
delightful it is to address ourselves to G0D5 to feel 
his influence on our minds ! Thus how happy may 
we be even in this world ; but you say rights if our 
happiness is so great here^ what will it be hereafter^ 
and then we shall never be separated. 

Farewell, my beloved ! I shall think of you con- 
tinually to-morrow. The holiest thoughts harmonise 
with my idea of you; of you who are more holy than 
I am, ^ho love, our great Creator not less than I do» 
More I think you cannot love Him ; not more, but 
in a more exalted manner. How happy am I to 
belong to you. Through you I shall be continually 
improving in piety and virtue. I cannot express the 
feelings of my heart on this subjeA, but they are 
very different from what they were half a year ago. 
Before I was beloved by you, I dreaded my greatest 
happiness, I was uneasy lest it should withdraw me 
from God. How much was I mistaken ! It is true 
that adversity leads us to GoD; but such felicity as 
mine cannot withdraw me from Him, or I could not 
be worthy to enjoy it. On the contrary, it brings me 
nearer to Him. The sensibility, the gratitude, the 
joy, all the feelings attendant on happiness, make 
my devotion the more fervent* 



[ 110 ] 



LETTER v. 

Klopstock to Meta. 

IT is Q0W Sunday evening, my dearest^ and I have 
staid at home^ not only because I like to do so oa & 
Sunday^ and because I wished to ' proceed with Ihe 
Messiah^ but also because I love to be alone withi 
you^ and therefore the society which formerly }f 
thought not uninteresting is now indiSeeent to me. 
But though T have been with you all this evenings' 
my best beloved, yet now first the thought of writing 
to you occurred to me. With what sweet peace of 
mind do I contemplate in every point of view tb^ 
thought that you are mine, that I am yours. O 
Meta, how entirely are you ^rmed to make m& 
happy^ and you are bestowed upon me. Can there 
be so miKjh happiness here below ? Yet what is the: 
greatest earthly happiness to that which we hope to 
enjoy in a future state ? Yes, my beloved, for ever,* 

* These extracts make no part of Mr. Klopstock's pub- 
lication; but as they are mentioned by him page, 22, they 
are inserted in this colledlion. They are taken from the 
manuscript letters sent to the editor by Dr, Mumssen: see his 
8th Letter. 



[ HI ] 



Letters from the Dead to the Lwing^ 



By MAitOA|lE!^TA Klopstock. 



LETTER I. 

O My friend, my brother, how happy am I! 
What it is to be blessed! But how can I de- 
scribe it to you ? Your language has no word$, 
your soul no ideas, of this perfeft happiness, of thi^ 
never-ending bliss. My brother, you will one day 
share it with me. Then will vou know what it is 
to be blessed. Amidst the many joys of HeaveUi 
what joy is this, that my brother, my Semida, shall 

* It appears from KJopstock'a Ode to Bodmer, that he 
was extremely partial to the writings of the celebrated Mrs. 
Rowe, which probably suggested to Mrs. EJopstock the idea 
of the following letters; bat it willy I believe, be allowed that 
ahe greatly es^cels the model from which they are copied. 



C "2 3 

one day be hap^y with me ! We shall then love 
each other with even more purity, more warmth 
than we have loved on earth. It is here alone that 
friendship is perfeft. Yet I feel that a brother, 
whom I have so long known, with whom I have 
been so long united, I should love differently from 
all the inhabitants of Heaven. With tenderness 
I should love him.— Abdiel I love with reverence. 
This exalted friend was my protefting Angel.— 
how the Angels love mankind ! 

When my soul had scarcely left her earthly 
dwelling, ye were all weeping over it; — but my bro- 
ther was resigned. As I soared aloft, unknowing 
how to tread the new paths of air, there appeared— 
think of this, my Semida, — there appeared to me your 
form. With open arms, with the transport of an 
unembodied soul, I hastened towards it; for I 
thought you also were dead, and that we should be 
blessed together. " I am not thy brother,*' said 
the spirit in a gentle voice, " I am Abdiel, thy 
guardian Angel* I put on the form of thy Semida, 
that thy yet scarce opened eyes might not be daz- 
zled by the splendour of an Angel. Come, I will 
be thy guide through these 4iew paths. I was thy 
guide on earth. I loved ^hee more than thou didst 



[ 113 ] 

love Semida; and so shall I now for ever love thee. 
I will be thy Semida till he come to us, and then 
will we three be friends for ever. How much a£- 
feflion wilt * thou first learn in Heaven, thou who 
hast already felt so much on earth ! But come, I 

will lead thee to the abode of the blessed^.'' O 

Semida, now your language fails. Of the glory of 
the Uncreated I can tell you nothing. Fear Him, 
love Him : go on living as you have lived, and 
advance continually towards perfe£lion. Then will 
you taste, then will you feel, what even the blest 
cannot express, what God has prepared for those 
who love Him 1 



LETTER II- 



My dearest Mother, 
I Am allowed to write to you. O that I could 
tell you how happy your Sunim is ! I spoke the 
language of the earth but imperfedly, and now I 
speak a far different one ; how then can I express 
myself? Beloved mother, I see you still before me 



f" 



ZJ 



i lf4 1 

«8 I lay in your bosofti wlien I died. I knew not 
what it was to die ; I only felt such pain as I hai 
never felt before^ and I saw you weep. O how I 
felt that you should weep ! I would have said,— 
my mother!— but I could not speak. I hung my 
little arms trembling around yours. You will re- 
inember it; for theti you wept more abundantly. 
Now it 'grew dark around me, and I could not see 
you. I knew not how it was, but I heard your 
voice. I heard you pray to ihy Redeemer for me. 
I prayed with you; for often bad I prayed with you 
before. And now I felt a suddeti pressure on my 
heart, and now I could see again ;«— but how difierent 
I felt from what I was before ! I ran to you, and 
embraced your knees, but you did not perceive it. 
J said, ^' My dearest mother!" — ^but you did not 
hear me. I waa so light, I flew when I would have 
walked. At length I saw my own little body. I 
saw you lay it on the bed, kneel by it, and lift your 
hands and eyes to Heaven, with a loqk, like my 
new friends the Angels. Then you wept no more, 
but became quite composed and resigned. I heard 
you say,—" The Lord gave> and the Lord hath ' 
taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord !*' 
^^I beard too what you said to my father; for I still 



-<; 



[ "5 ] 

followed you. ^^ Sunim isdead^'^ you said to hinij 
^^ Stmim is with God;''— ^and my &ther began to 

weep aloud^ and said^ the only heir of his name 
and fortune now was dead^ and all was lost to him. 
How gently did you lead him back ; how sweetly 
«peak of God, and of eternity ! 

I bad now heard that I was dead, but knew not 
what it meant ; until a heavenly form came to me, 
and gently led me away ; for I thought of nothing 
but remaining with you. This heavenly form was 
my Salem, whom I love as I love you, and who led 
me to the world I now inhabit. It is a star where 
all the souls of children come when they are dead; 
and where the heavenly Salem prepareis us for su- 
preme bliss. O that you could see this world, and 
know how it contributes to our present happiness ! 
Here too we have, sensible objefts, whiph instru^ 
and prepare us for something higher ; but Salem 
does this still more. With what rapture do I listen, 
when be tells us;of the Great Creator, of the Heaven 
of the blessed, of the Hosts of Angels, and of the 
Vision of God, which we shall attain when our 
knowledge shall be ripe enojugb. I k^ow not whe- 
ther tjhis will be on that great day when the earth 
shall be judged, or sooner. Salem has not revealed 

I 2 



<, 



C ii« 3 

this to me ; and I am already sufficiently happy ia 
knowing that I shall, at some fiiture time, assuredly 
go there. O, how happy am T, even here ! 

But, my dear mother, — ^fbr I must come to it at 
last — how I grieve for -thee, thou best of mothers! 
Yet Salem says, it is better you should know before 
band, for then you can prepare for it. Ah, my 
'mother, the son whom God has given you in my 
place, who is so like me, who is called Sunim too^ — 
he shall also die. My mother^ now, for the first 
time in this world, I weep. Will you have strength 
to bear this second trial ? Opray to God for strength; 
I will pray with you. Your former viftory pleased 
the Almighty. Salem told me so. Offend not 
by impatience Him whom you have once already 
pleased by resignation. It is hard, very hard, my 
mother. I feel it with you ; but Salem says, God 
loves you, and therefore does He send these trials. 
O then, offend not God, who so loves us all; who 
makes your first Sunim so happy ; who will make 
the second happy also! No, you will not murmur, 
J know it. You will patiently endure what God 
lias appointed for you ; and then will you also be 
blest. What bliss wilt thou at once attain, thou 
who hast advanced so far on earth ! 



I 117 ] 



I-ETTER III. 



Mt Dauohterj 
IT is long since I died. It was only a few hours 
after your birth. You know me not^ but I love 
you. How can I help loving my own daughter^ 
and the daughter too of the best of husbands ! You 
have heard from my sister^ how your father and I 
bved each other. Ours was not a love that first 
arose in marriage^ the work of chance; it was 
founded on virtue^ and on the sympathy of our 
hearts. We had chosen each other. — And will the 
daughter of such a marriage venture to take a hus- 
band whom she scarcely knows^ merely because he 
is of her own rank, and can make her still richer ? 
How oan you think so lightly of marriage ? Mar- 
riage fixes your fate^ my daughter. The whole of 
your former life is but a preparation to this longer, 
to [this more important life. All your temporal 
happiness depends on your choice of a husband ; and 
how nearly is the eternal connej^ed with it ! What 



r-J 



t H8 ] 

do you know of the man to whom you are on the 
point of giving your hand ? Have you once consi- 
dered^ Melissa^ whether he is the man on whose 
support you -could lean^ through all the crooked 
ways of life ? Will he lead you at last to the throne 
of the Almighty, and say, "here is the wife 
whom Thou hast given me?'' O Melissa, can a 
man do this, who never thinks of etemiiy ? A 
man who wastes the latter half of the day amongst 
trifling pastimes, and to whom the former half is 90 
wearisome a load. Fool that he is ! even his body, 
emaciated by excess, does not remind him that his 
time will be very short. And shall my Meliisa be 
the portion of such a man ?^-Do you expe£l to re- 
form him ? Ah, Melissa, siicb is the fooKsh confi- 
dence so many of you place in your own powers. 
A man so fastidious in every thing, how soon will 
he be tired of a wife ! A man who knows not sen- 
ous refled:ion, how will he endure it from a woman? 
Will he even have time' to listen to you ? A tnan 
who flies from solitude, to whom a conversatiofi whh 
a rational friend is insupportable, who tnust be in 
company, will he talk with his wife of things which 
concern the soul ? Melissa, you deceive youi-self. 
Your tender heart will not avail you ; he under- 



I 



atands nothis^ of the heart ; and when tepdernes^ 
avails not a wofnan^ what can help her ? Religion ? 
Do you believe that a man of such morals has any 
religion ? No — he has none. He will even try to 
rob you of yours; and should you retain it, he will 
make your children laugh at you for it.-^You trem* 
ble^ my daughter. Yes— you have reason. Think 
to what misery a thoughtless step exposes you. It 
sacrifices, your teipporaU wd risques your eternal 
wel&re. 

What happiness can you eojoy with ainan who 
never thinks? who supposes he makes y«u happy 
by draggjiiQg you into company; with ., whom you 
cannot apeak of God^ of etermty, of the peace^ 
the security^ the happiness of friendships and of its 
higher degree^ connubial tenderness ; of the educa* 
^ioii of ypur inqpcent children^ and of a thousand 
such interesting subjects ? How wretched will you 
be with a man whom you cannot love ! Such a 
man Melissa never can love ; and how hard will 
you find it to obey> when you dp not love. Will 
you not often wish to be rid of your duty ? And 
how easily may this wish lead you to throw it off. 
How will you be able to educate your children ? 
Should nature be strong enough to make you love 



[ ISO ] 

the children even of such a man^ should you m$h 
to educate them wdl, will you have the power ! O 
how much of the good you do, will he destroy!—^ 
And above all, what will become of your soul with 
such a husband? Have you never considered in 
what dsmger it is ? A man who has no religion, (a 

I. 

[ man of such morals can have none.) will he sufier 
\ his wife to have any? If you have no afTe&ion for 
him, ^you will most easily retain it } but ^ven then 
you will grow careless in it, because your husband 
does not encourage, strengthen} lead ypM continually 
on^ and like a guardian angel watch over your tender 
soul. Bijit if, from pity, from duty, or from a preju- 
diced partiality^ you still love him,^ — then fear the 
ihost for your soul ! The man who knows that he 
is beloved, finds it easy to shake the principles of a 
weak woman. Therefore tremble, ye MeliiSas, when 
ye make yoiir choice, tremble for your eternal hap- 
piness] Choose none but a Christian. Choose 
not a free thinker, who laughs at you and your reli- 
gion. /.Choose not on^ who '.would degrade you 
to the darkness of natural religion] Choose not 
one,— O shudder at the thought ! — who would rob 
you of your Redeemer, your ouly salvation; and 
would debase his most exalted divinity to nothing 



[ 121 J 

more than a great and good man, Nettlfer choose 
a sceptic. He. may be a virtuous man ; God may 
have patience with him ; but to you is not allotted 
the portion of wisdom to convince him, and you 
put yourself in danger of doubling with him. — 
Choose a Christian, who in his strong hand will lead- 
you through the slippery world ; and at last, to the 
throne of the Redeemer. Then, together will ye 
come, my Melissa, and taste and feel what I now 
feci with my husband, my Christian husband ;-— 
and yet greater will be our happiness, when she 
whom our sou) loves enjoys it with us! 



LETTER IV. 

I Loved you much, my sister, while yet I lived 
on the same earth with you, and I love you still. 
Can I belter prove it, than by employing this un- 
common method of being useful to you ? 1 should 
have said to you, on earth, all that I am now going 
to say, had I lived longer; for it requires not hea- 
venly wisdom: but while I lived, you were so young, 
that I could do no more than jirst begin to form 



I 122 ] 

your heart. I rejoice^ t|iat from this early seed ha» 
sprung aleady so much good* You tread a better 
path than many of your sisters. You do not cleave 
to the superficial^ the lights the frivolous^ the vain^ 
the nothing of the earth ; bub^till^ Melinda^ you 
deave to the earth. I rejoice to see you prefer 
stiUness to noise ; the society of your husband and 
children' to those assemblies which are also called 
society. I rgoice that you prefer the fulfilment of 

, your duties towards your husband and children^ and 
the little affairs which are entrusted to the narrow 
Sphere of your sex^ to such empty pleasures; but 

^ yet Melinda^ you cleave to the earthy and only to 
the earth. It is proper^ it is rights to perform the 
duties which you perform ; but it is not enough to 
perform them onlj/^ We are not made for the little 

f duties of mortality alone, but for the higher duties 

' of eternity. Let it be your first endeavour to know 
your Creator and Redeemer. You believe in him ; 
but bow do you believe ? Have you examined the 
grounds of that belief, and how have you been con- 
vinced ? Do you try to be present in thought with 
God, as He is present withjyou ? Do you with your 
whole heart, with all your feelings^ love Hini who 
bath so loved you ? Are you suj9iciently attentive. 



[ 123 ] 

ea^mest^ striSt, that your heart be pure before Him 
who sees into the inmost soul ; who sees each deed^ j 
even to its motive ? To comprehend all the duties / 
of society in one^ dost thou to others as thou wouldst ! 
they should do to thee 7 O Mclinda, see what is ] 
wanting in you ? You perform the little, but you '. 
delay the great^ the important duties* Employ your 
leisure^ (for of the time which God has lent you 
an account must be given^) employ it in thinking of 
QoD* Think of his love^ think of it continually, 
and learn io/eel it* This is our first duty^ and how 
easy a duty it is ! From this flow* all the others. — 
Thou canst not find it diflicult to love that God, 
who, for so happy a wo'/ld, and for a still happier 
eternity, hath created^ redeemed, and sand:|fied thee; 
who hath reserved for thee such bliss! O Melinda, 
were not even angels mute when they would speak 
of this, what transports would thy sister now pro- 
claim to thee ! But it has not entered into the heart 
of man, it cannot enter into the heart of man, what 
God has prepared for us; what I already feci, 
and thou shalt feel* O my sister, thou who dost 
no evil, but not enough of good, (and that the Holy 
One will piiuish,) allow thyself to be awakened to 
eternal happiness ! 



[ 124 ] 



LETTER V. 



LITTLE dost thou expeft, O Lorenzo, now after 
a year, to hear of thy friend ; ah, rather say, of thy 
Companion in dissipation, for a conne£tion like ours 
deserves not the name of friendship; little dost 
thou no\V expeft to receive any account of me. 
Thou art right. Who sends accounts from this- 
dreadful prison ? In common with the terrific spi- 
rits our seducers, we hate the whole human race ; 
and we hate Him too,— Him whom I am forced to 
confess, whom on earth I endeavoured to deny,— 
whom yet I would deny> but cannot. O ye, 

yet mortals ! ye who yet can comfort yourselves 
with his love, ye cannot conceive what it is to know 
God only in his omnipotence ! God without love ! 
Lorenzo, I feel a mixture of cruelty and compassion. 
One thought says, I will save him from misery by 
my example 5 and another says, I will rejoice in his 
torture ! Where wast thou on the day of terror ? 
Where wast thou, that thou wast not buried with 



[ 123 ,j 

me in the ruins of Lisbon? For hadst thou died^ 
thou hadst been here . H ear then my story, 

for thou knowest it not. Ye found not my body; 
it was burnt.— —Hear me ! ■ ■ 

From the excesses of the night I yet lay in a deep 
sleep. The piorning dawn had beheld my crimes. 
I waked in terror at the shaking of the earth. At 
the same^moment the house fell in. '^ Tis He^ 
^is Hcj^ 1 cried, *^ He kills me !** For who can 
totally deny Him, the Fearful One ? We feel, when 
we sin, that we cannot; but we stupify ourselves. 
I had almost prayed, but I could not« I knew not 
how to pray; and the anxiety to save my life, ab- 
sorbed the thought of God. At length I worked 
my way from out of the ruins of my dwelling. I 
hastened on, without any accident. This made me 
jfi?el secure. I met with her,— perhaps she is now 
a saint, — her whom I so thoughtlessly seduced to 
stain her sex with the same crimes that we stain 
ours with. "Ah, seducer," said she, '^profligate! 
repent, repent, or we are this moment lost!" It 
seemed to me ridiculous to hear her preach repent- 

ft 

ance ; I told her so, and asked how she could suffer 
herself to be alarmed by such an accident. O I^. 
renzo, the words stuck in my throat ! A house fell 



down^ and crushed both her and me. She was B009 
dead. I only saw her raise her eyes to Heaven^ and 
I havb not found her here. 1 was much mangled; 
I could not die. ; I beheld once more the setting^ 
sun. I rolled myself oyer in blood and dust^ and 
saw beside me the old man who was the constats 
6h}Q& of our ridicule. How peacefully he died! 
I would hav6 given my whole life to have died like 
him. ^^ Redeemer! Saviour!** in a soft vcricc.I 
heard him say. How could I now believe a Saviour^? 
I never had believed him. 

I died; — that is, I changed my sugpnyy that 
dreadful agony^ for one more dreadful. I plunged 
into the abyss of perdition. And now^ Lorenzo^ 
wilt thou come to me? Wilt thou repent? Can 
Lorenzo repent? Thou canst> since she could. But 
accursed be thou ; accursed be she j if yet I have 
power to curse, — accursed be ye all, for having so * 
great a share in my ruin ! Ye must all come to me, 
all suffer what I suffer. I cannot bear ye should . 
be less miserable than I am ! O He ! He who sitB 
in judgment ! There is a God, Lorenzo ! There 
is a conscience ! There is unutterable woe ! 



C 1^7 ] 



LETTER VI. 



ABISTUS^ I fell ia the unfortunate duel. By 
thy hand I died! And I had been condemned^ 
were not the mercy of the Eternal without mea- 
sure; mercy to you incomprehensible, if ye knew 
what ye are. O Aristus, thou knowest not thyself, 
thou knowest not thy God! Thou hast scarcely 
thought of his omnipotence; still less of his mercy. 
Thou dost still remain in the darkness^ the thought* 
lessness in which thou wast brought up. Thy 
father thought nothing ne/edful for thee but cou- 
rage; thy profession required not virtue and reli- 
gion ; and thou didst not require them from thy 
immortal soul. O how melancholy a thought it is, 
that the profession which makes us more conversant 
^ith death than age and sickness do, that it should 
know the least of God ! Thou art not an infidel, 
and thou art not a Christian. O miserable friend ! 
—for thou wert my friend, according to our faint 
ideas of friendship,— look into thyself, and tremble ! 
There is a God; thou art immortal. Thou wast 



[128 J 

cAStoffby G0D5 for thou hadst sinned. God be- 
came man in order to redeem thee; and thou mayest 
now be for ever happy ! This thou knowest. Thou 
canst at least remember that it was taqght thee in 
thy childhood; but thou hast never thought on this. 
If thou hadst died in my place,- and God had not 
had mercy on thee, how wouldst thou have felt^ 
amidst inconceivable torment, that thy thoughtless- 
ness alone was the cause, that instead of those dread- 
ful tortures, thou didst not enjoy eternal happinesSj 
happiness which I should in vain attempt to de- 
scribe ! Now — now it is yet time, Aristus ! Per- 
haps to-morrow's fight may send thee, with teti 
thousand other thoughtless wretches, to perdition 1 O 
turn thee ; thou already knowest enough to turn, and 
much thou needesi not know. Feel only that thoa* 
art a sinner^ and that he, Jesus of Nazareth,<^a 
name so many of thy brethren in vain endeavour to 
debase; — He, the God whom I now worship, is 
thine Atoner^ thy Redeemer ! How calmly mayest 
thou march to battle, if thou but feel this rightly ! 
How glorious, (even amongst Angels this is glory,) 
bow glorious to die, when tl^ou diest to defend thy 
country, to save thy fellow-citizens ! How far be- 
low this, how mean was the death I died I Even ' 



■A 



C 129 i 

I 

nbw I should feel ashamed of the disgrace of a duet^ 
if God had not forgiven my sin. O Aristus, for a 
sipgle word I died in blood ; and my friend was 
my barbarous murderer ! As thoughtlessly as we 
had livedo so went we forth lo deaths The laws of 
our station enjoined it. Laws never given^ even' by 
man^ imaginary laws^ ye we obeyed] and those 
for ever engraved on our hearts> those so plainly re- 
vealed^-— the acknowledged laws of God, the Cre- 
ator^ the Lord of man^ — those we despised^ s^ainst 
those we rebelled ; and (O amazing folly !) without 
knowings without wishing to know them. That 
work of fancy. Honour, alone is revered by most 
men in our station ; that alone they make their 
idol. The true honour of obeying God, and being 
immortal, they know not. Alas, they never concern 
themselves to know it. We went, and did our 
dreadful work. We had spoken a few unthinking 
words, (Oh, if God punished as we punish, we had 
been long since condemned,) we had said a few unl 
thinking words, and this must be avenged with bloody 
with death ! While yet we knew nothing higher than 
this ufe, we loved each other^ and we must kill 
each other ! We felt obscure forebodings of what 
death might be to us^ but this life must be served. 




[ 130 ] 

Now we already stood in blood ; each sought the 
other's life ; he must do so to save his own. Un- 
happy thought for souls that depend on this life 
only; and far more unhappy^ if they know the 
dreadful consequences of such thoughtlessness.— I 
fell. Thou didst feel some emotion at the fate 
thy friend ; but like all thy emotions, it was transi 
tory. Thy soul does ever tear itself from serious 
thought. Observing that I was not dead^ com- 
passion bid thee bring me to the nearest house, and 
commend me to the care of a surgeon, and then 
thou didst fly for safety. Chance, as you call it,— 
we call it here the eternal providence of God,—* 
had led me to a Christian woman's house. She 
was so happy as to serve her God in peace and 
tranquillity, within the limits of her sex, and now 
her old age was crowned by the saving of a soul. 
O how I shall thank her, when she comes to us1 
She sat down by me, and began to talk of eternity ; 
a sound that waked my soul firom the sleep in which 
she had hitherto been sunk ; — dreadful waking, which 
awaked her to despair ! Now I felt the full weight 
of my want of thought, the extent of its guilt^ and 
'of its punishment. I felt myself condemned. I 
had lost 'the power of speech, but still- my grief 



I 



C 131 3 

could rage. She saw it, but she ventured not to 
combat my despair. She sent to the worthy pastor 
of the village, a man despised by Aristus. He came 
— ^and O, may God reward him ! — he led me up to 
my Redeemer. Long indeed had I still to combat 
with despair ; for be did not make my sin appear 
light, but he shewed me the means of obtaining 
pardon. I seized it, and was saved, in the last 
breath of my existence saved, and now I am happy. 
He has pardoned, the Eternally Merciful 1 But had 
I died a few hours sooner, I had now been lost. 
And what wilt thou be to-morrow, if, this day, thou 
dost not repent ? Behold the hosts are prepared for 
the contest. The Lord has spoken in his anger,' 
nations shall slay each other. To-morrow the noise 
of the battle will leave thee no time to colleft thy 
soul. Do it, — O do it to-day, if thou regard thy 
eternal salvation ; and let this be thy first repentant 
rcbolution, that on thy own account, thou never 
again wilt slay thy brother. Be great enough, be- 
fore men and angels, be great enough to say, when 
another demands thy blood, ^^ No, I will never give 
it; I dare not; my God forbids; I will not do what 
God forbids. I will use my life to honour Him, 
and serve my neighbour.^' Fear not that he will 

K 2 



t 132 3 

take thy life without resistance. If be be base 
enough to do so^ let him take it. What is the loss 
of life to an immortal^ a redeemed soul? Pre- 
pare thyself for death, but seek it not; he cannot 
rob thee of the joys of heaven. Dost thou fear the 
loss of temporal advantages ? Lose them, and gain 

eternal ones. Sacrifice thy profession, if thy brethren 

• 

be mad enough to force thee to it. Degrade thyself 
in the eyes of the world, and be exalted before God. 
O my Aristus, how trifling appear all. worldly ad- 
vantages, when we stand above the world! One 
day we shall all foe forced to render an account, an 
account of our unthinking lives, an account that 
we respeAed a received opinion more than the clear 
law of God; that we stifled all the feelings of 
our soul, and madly plunged ourselves in de&th, of 
which the dread was not in vain implanted in our 

nature. O Aristus, repent! Thy redeemed friend 

intreats thee. Be saved, like him I 



^ 



I 



[ 138 ] 



LETTER VII. 

Mr BELOVED CiDLI,* ' 

THE hour was come^ that hour by thee so dreaded^ 
yet for which thou hadst been so long prepared 5 the 
hour was come^ that took me from thee — from your 
world— ^^ ever ;-but how short is the^br ever of 
your world ! The first violence of thy grief is novv 
assuaged 3 assuaged by religion alone. So long I 
waited before I wrote to thee, thou best beloved !— 
How affeftionate was thv wish that thou mightest be 
the deserted one! Now is that wish fulfilled; but 
hast thou strength for the tri^l ? Q pray to God^ 
devoutly pray, for strength ! Thou art weak, and 
yet I blame thee not. It is so short a time since I 
lyas in the earthly body, th^t I know full well how 

* Cidli is the name given to Jairus's daughter in a beaur 
tiful episode in the Messiah. By this name Klopstock had 
been accustomed to distinguish his Meta,in such of his poems 
as were addressed to her. She wrote this and the following 
letter on the supposition that her Husband was deady and 
probably in consequence tf a conversation in which she ev 
pressed a widi that she might be the survivor. 



[ 134 ] 

hard it is to soar to the higher virtues. This is exalted 

virtue, to bear the cross as the Almighty wills! 

I know my Cidli murmurs not ; I see thee bear thy 
. cross with resignation ; but, my Cidli, thou art too 
I much dejeAed^ The grief, the merancholy that 

dwell so deeply in thy heart, thou seekest not to 

* 

restrain, but rather feedest them to the utmost. To 
weep is now thy comfort, and thou thinkest that 
thou hast done enough if thou dost weep injsilence. 
But that is not enough. Thou must wipe away thy 
tears, and tear thyself from solitude. Thou must 
take an interest in all creation, and in the whole 
human race. Whilst thou art in the world, the 
duty of being useful never ceases, and thou canst be 
useful, my Cidli. Though I am dead, and God no 
longer gives us the blessing of connubial life, the 
greatest happiness on earth, — though he has left us 
childless, — think not that thy connexion with the 
world has ceased. Go seek out children, seek out 
friends ! Let all whom thou canst teach to love the 
Eternal, be thy friends, be thy children. I know, my 
Cidli, that on reading this, thou will tear thyself from 
thy grief ; thou who dost so earnestly endeavour to 
do thy duty ; and for this re^on I am permitted to 
liise this means indplg^d to so few. — O ipy CidlJj 



I 



[ 13* 1 

bow I have loved thee ! How did my soul hang on 
thy soul ! and how well didst thou deserve it ! Such 
love as ours was pleasing to the Almighty; 
because we forgot not Him ; because we thanked 
Him that we had found each other^ and worshipped 
Him together! 

O my only love^ how often have I seen thee raise 
thine eyes to Heaven^ with all the full devotion of 
thy heart ! How did I then thank God for giving 
me this soul^ so certainly appointed to be blessed ! 
. Go, Cidii, teach it to the worlds to those who do not 
, believe it possible at once to love and pray, teach that 
pure love, which itself is virtue, and pleasing to Gox>. 
Put, Cidii, what was this to thelove whichi now feel ? 
I love thee so, that even in heaven my.heart longs 
for thee. O when thou once art here, with me to 
worship, to worship here — face to face ! A holy 
awe now'seizes me : O CidIi, who can speak of the 
joys of Heaven ? How wilt thou then feel ? Thou 
shalt come to us, my chosen one. Fear not on ac- 
count of the sins which now disturb thy peace. I ! 
will not call them trifling. What we term failings, [ 
arc, before the Holy One, great crimes. But the \ 
love with which He pardons is unspeakable. The 
Angel, who, invisible to thee, brings this, will still ; 



C i3(J 3 

watch dver thee; he will make thy heart continually 
more perfe<9;. He was our Angel on earthy for wc 
we^e so united that we had but one Angel, h.f^t '. 



LETTER VHt 



The Answer. 

YES, I will write, though I am ignorant whether 
thou knowest what I say. How little do we narrow* 
minded creatures know of you ! Perhaps the same 
who brought thy letter, wy Angel, (ah, he once was 
ours I) perhaps he can take this to thee; or at least, 
can tell thee some of its contents. Perhaps,—© how 
soothing is the thought! — perhaps thou thyself mayst 
still be near me, though invisible, and some day 
read it. Perhaps thou dost read it now ; now as I 

write ! O if thou dost hover round me, thou 

how shall I now address thee ? If thou still dost 
hover round me, thou blessed one, have pity on me. 
Thou wilt fipd me weak ; but I will, I will do what 
thou requirest of me. Thou dost justly require 
what God requires. Alas, I knew that God re- 
quired it, yet I did it not^ till awakened by thee ! 



f 137 3 

But I will indeed awake. I will tear myself 
from grief. I will li vex for the world in which 
I am ; I will do what duty requires ; f will no 
longer sleep.— ^ — O that my remaining time, time 
now so blank and dead to me, O that it might be 
short ! ^Forgive, thou Ever Merciful, forgive the 
hasty wish ! Not as I will, but as Thou wilt ! 
Wert thou yet with me, my only love, wert thou, 
in thy earthly body, yet with me to support my 

weakness ! So should every man support the 

companion of his life, and how amiably didst 
thou perform this duty! I may remind thee how 
willingly I followed. To pbey thee was my pride* 
What woman would not have obeyed thee, thou 
excellent, thou upright man, thou Christian ! But 
I have thee now no longer-^thy encouragement, thy 
example, thy assistance. I am desolate ! My wish 
is heard; the wish of my tendtrness,^ when in its 
iitmost purity, it rose to the greatest height : thou 
art gone before me. Till now I knew not what I 
askedy but even now I thank Him who heard my 
prayer; I thank Him that thou hast hot to suffer 

what I suffer. Thou didst grieve, yes, my best 

beloved, amidst the agonies of death, amidst the 
foretiaste of thy bliss, I saw thy grief for thy deserted 



[ 138 ] 

Cidlit How can I support the thought ! Yet 
never, never can I drive the image from my soul, 
from before my eyes. Thy closing eye, thy failing 
voice, thy trembling, cold, and dewy hand, which 
yet pressed mine when thou couldst speak no more. 
Now it grew weak the gentle pressure, O yet I feel 

it ! and now yet weaker; and now it was stiff! 

I cannot, I cannot support the recolleftion. But 
thy last blessing, that shall comfort me, — thy f)art- 
ing benediftion ! ^^ Come quickly after n^e !'* 
How fervently did I ask it with thee, thou already 
blessed; and how incessantly do I now repeat the 
prayer. But thou wert dead ; I had thee now no 
more, and now no more thy body overwhich I bung 
continually, when the heavenly soul had left it: 
now, not even that; I am now alone. How can 
I support it, I who never could endure the absence 
of a single day from thee ! I have no son whom I 
migl^t teUch to be like his father ; no daughter who 
might weep with her mother 1 I am alone, and 
desolate ! 

O thou, my heavenly friend, if thou still have any 
influence on me, let it work in me for good, and 
make me mild, resigned,' willing lo do what duty 
requires ; let it make me worthy of thy love ! Thou 



[ 130 ] 

whom my soul loves, thou who still lovest me, how 
shall I now think of thee ? How can I raise my 
feelings to the glory, the purity, that suits a blessed 
spirit. How great the difference between thee and 
me ! Far greater than on earth ; where not the 
weakness of my sex alone, but thy all-exalted mind, 
and yet more, thy all exalted heart, made the distance 
^o wide between us. But take my weakness on thee, 
as thou didst on earth; be thou my guide, my guar- 

* 

dian angel ; thou who with unwearied earnestness 
didst perform every duty of re6\itude and Christi* 
anity ; teach me, help me, to fulfill my duties^ and 
fetch me, O soon fetch <me after thee 1 ' 

O thou Almighty, send me thesoul-of my 
departed friend, or give me, I implore Thee^ by some 
other means, thy grace ! Lead me, now I am 
alone, in thy hand, through the world, to me become 
so rough, so pathless, and so hard to pass through ! I 
will be easily led. But 1 intreat thee, with all resig- 
nation, with all submission to thy will, let me soon 
follow him ! Let me soon come to thy blessed, to 
my beloved, — to Thee ! 



C 140 3 



X 



DIALOGUE ON FAME.* 

A FRAOMBMT. 

I Once told my Meta^ that I thought a dialogue, 
if written by one or two friends, would appear most 
natural. We also wished to do this for the sake of 
leaving a memorial to the last of us who should 
remain, and to our friends. This unfinished trifle 
was the consequence of this fancy. I earnestly wish 
that I could recolle£t somex>f her serious conver- 
sations with me, so as to Write them down ; for 
what a heart had she, and what a quick, and at the 
same time accurate understanding ! 



. Meta, Do you consider the immortality of Fame ■ 
as a chimera of pride ? Or is the attainment of it 
worthy the endeavours of a sensiUe and upright man? 



<(* 



That lasting fame and perpetuity of praise^ which God > 
^ and good men have consented shall be the reward of those 
^ whose published labours advance the good of mankind." 

Milton^ s /Iretfagihca. 



C 141 ] 

Klopstockm I consider fame as a means to ac- 
quire friends even after our death. How sweet and 
haw suitable is it to a sensible man to have friends^ 
even then. 

Mela. Yet many of those who are become im? 
mortal^ have ridiculed the endeavour to become so. 
And besides, how cold^ in general^ are those friends 
after death ! 

Khpstock. Often do people ridicule what they 
wish and seriously endeavour to obtain; either 
because they despair of obtaining it^ or because they 
know how much their endeavour is blamed, when its 
obje6t is too plainly discovered. Their ridicule is 
therefore not sincere. They are either attempting tq 
conceal their aim from others^ or they are unwilling 
to acknowledge to themselves their secret wish. He 
who deserves immortality will never be a cold friend 
to one who is already immortal. 

Meta* A few warm friends are better than a great 
many cold ones.*— But as to the first part of your 
answer^ I cannot be convinced that all these great 
men dissembled in this point. They considered 
glory as something so little that the attainment of 

a 

even its higjjest step, immortality, appeared scarcely 
worthy to be wished. 



[ 142 ] 

Klapsfock. If they really considered immortality 
as so little a thing, they certainly never thought of 
their usefulness ; they never considered how much it 
connefts us with posterity. I hold true glory to be 
as congenial to the simplicity of nature, as I think 
vanity is opposite to it. 

Meta, I grant that the desire of true glory is con- 
genial to our nature. I grant^ further, that great 
ad:ions, and good writings, if contemplated and read 
by the whole world, are useful to a wide extent. 
But these actions should be performed, these works 
should be written, without the intention of thereby 
gaining immortality. The love of fame is too en- 
ticing a seducer. It leads us imperceptibly to con- 
sider glory not as a means of being useful, but as an 
end, in itself worthy to be attained; and thus, 
though our undertakings lose not their usefulness, it\ 
robs us of our moral worth, by changing our inten- , 
tion in them. 

KlopstocL Usefulness should undoubtedly be the 
first objeft in our undertakings. How worthless is 
the immortality of those who have obtained it 
without being useful ! I do not- believe that true 
glory will ever seduce us to consider her as our chief 



■I - 



[ 143 ] 

objeft. She is always too much connected with 
our duty^ and with usefulness.— But if we be useful^ 
why should we not rejoice to gain^ at the same time, 
this pure, this ianocent glory ? 



Meta* I should be too rigid, did I wish to forbid 
ail joy in the prospedl of immortal fame; l^ut to in- 
dulge it very seldom, and with great moderation, is 
not too severe advice. It is so easy to jnistake the 
means for the end. 

Klopstock. What I have hitherto called the love 
of glory, is in particular the wish to be loved and v 
valued by posterity, as we wish to be by our con-' 
temporaries ; or as I said at first, it is a wish to coHeA 
friends. This wish will not easily lead us to any 
thing but the frequent and varied ideas of the use we 
may be of to those friends. How many does Young 
rouse from the slumber of thoughtlessness or in- 
difference ! And those who are no longer thought^ 
less or indifferent, how does he animate their 
feelings ! How raise them to bis own ! How does 
he teach them to worship God, to be Christians \ 
And the prospe£):, the foretaste of all this — ^shall it 
not be allowed ? Is it not high and heavenly joy } 



C 1** j 



Mr. Klopstock, in contmuatiorti 

I Have frequently debated with myself whether t 
should attempt to describe my Meta's charafter. I 
am bound not only to the public^ but to her, to 
avoid every appearance of exaggeration, and how few 
are there whose hearts will justify them in believing 
that what I must say is not beyond the triith ! To 
those few, I can with one stroke give a general idea 
of her character. She was formed to "bay with Arria, 
^^ Paetus, it is not painful/' — But these are the readers 
who would most wish to know the particular features 
of such a character. They will fiftd soipe of them 
in the following fragments of letters written since 
our marriage. We had never been separated, ex* 
cept for t\yo months, during which those letters were 
written. She lived only two months more after my 
return. Since I write this sketch chiefly \o speak 
of her death, it appears to me essential to ma||;)e 
known something of what passed in our minds du- 
ring a separation which, both to me, and to her, wa» 
a preparation for it. ' 

But before I make the extracts, let mebe permitted 
to say a little more of her. — About three years ago 



J 



[ 145 ] 

she undertook to write my life^ and this is her in- 
troduftion to it. 

^^ Al) that concerns Klopstock, and all that he 
does, is so important in my eyes, that I can no longer 
resist the wish to preserve in writing what. I observe 
ip him^ and what to me appears most worthy of ob- 
servation. I intend to confine myself to what relates 
to his character, and whatever has any connexion 
with* the Messiah; but loving him as I do, many 
little trifles which concern our mutual attachment, 
our marriage, and myself, will naturally intrude. I 
sh^ll observe no drdpr of time, but shall write what 
my heart now, feels, what I now remark, or what 
I have long since remarked, and of which I am now 
reminded,'* 

She says afterwards^— 5' As he knows that I 
delight to hear whatever he composes, he always reads 
it to me immediately, though it be often only a few 
verses. EFe is so far from opinionated, that on this 
first reading I am to make my criticisms, just as they 
come into my head." 

How much do I lose in her even in this respe£t ! 
How perfect was her taste, how exquisitely fine her 
feelings ! She observed every thing, even to the 
slightest turn of the thought. I had only to look at 

L 



[ 146 3 

her^ and could see in her face when (even a syllable 
pleased or displeased her; and when I led her to 
explain the reason of her remarks^ no demonstration 
toald be more true^ more accurate, or more appro- 
priate to the subjed. But in general this gave us 
very little trouble, for we understood e^ch odier when 
we had scarcely b^un to explain our ideas. 



Met A TO Klopstock* 

Hamburg y Aug. Qdy 1758. 
r Did you go three times the distance to the post» 
only to see me for one minute more ? Do not ima- 
gine I think this a small matter. It confirms me 
in my old suspicion, that you have indeed a little 
love for me. If you could see me to-day, I know 
you would love me dearly. No one could know by 
my appearance that you had left me. The thought 
that grief might hurt our child, (for I have too 
severely felt the few tears which I could not re- 
strain,) that it would displease you, and be ingrati- 
tude for our otherwise so great happiness, makes me 
so resigned that I am almost easy. I cannot indeed 
banish the thought of you, nor do I wish it ; but I 
can view it in such a light that it does not disturb 



C i47 3 

me. Our God is with you, and will restore you to 
the Sittns of your wife ! 

August 3, 

I am well, and have continued a heroine ; though 
I am obliged to be very watchful against my enemy^ 
who lies in ambush, and shoots like a Hanoverian 
rifleman. In earnest, when I think I have the 
utmost command of myself, the thought of you 
often seizes me so suddenly, that it costs me much 
trouble to compose myself again. Thfe most trifling 
circumstances often occasion this. 

Now come, Eliza,* and write your certificate. ^^ I 
hereby certify upon my honour, that Meta Klopstock 
behaves so well as to astonish me continually* / 
would not be easy, — certainly not, — though I had 
promised my husband a thousand times. I am half 
angry that she is so. It is too much love for a hus* 
band to be easy purely out of tenderness for him.'^ 

They w&ked me this morning to give me your 
letter, and I goMhe head*ach ; but that pain was 
pleasure. Yesterday evening I had some obscure 
notion of a letter, but could not imagine how it 
thould come. I never thought of Schonburg ; but 

* Mr6. Elopstock'a «8ter, who wfts married to Mf. 
Schmidt* 

L S 



[ 148 ] 

* 

you thought of iti You could not help writing; 
yesy that is natural^ for you love me. / could not 
have helped writing neither. 

Jiugtist 4. 

I wish the nights were not so dark. I have each 
night had a strong inclination to rise^ and write to 
beg you would return; but do not suppose that I 
indulge this thought. — ^Yet if the wind has not 
changed^ you might perhaps arrive on Monday^ and 
see G — , and return on Wednesday. Ah, then I 
should have you again for that short time ! 

Yes, my dear Klopstock, God will give us what 
in his wisdom He sees good for us ; and if any thing 
be wanting to our wishes. He will teach us to bear 
that want. 

August 7y my Father's dying day. 

Are you really gone ? The wind was west this 
morning, but it is changed again to the east; our 
God be with thee 1 Believe me. I trust in Him 
alone, and am convinced that the way by which He 
leads us is the best for us. 

August 10. 
" Where are you now ? Still in the ship, I fm, for 
you b&ve had very unfavourable winds. May God 
have preserved you from thunder-storms! They have 



t 14p ] 

been my greatest dread. We have had violent heat, 
but no thunder. Last night it was very very dark. 
I could not help being anxiws about you, but it was 
not such anxiety as would have been ingratitude for 
my great happiness; it was tenderness which I can 
never, cease to feel. God be with you, and grant 
that I may hear from you on Tuesday ; but even if 
it should not be so^ I will not be so uneasy as to hurt 
my health. 

I was ready by eight o^clock. Oh, if you had come 
home ! How I wished for you ! It is hard, very . 
hard, after havinglived with you, to live without you! 

August 15. 

God be praised ! I have your letter. O what 
joy ! What shall I feel when I have you again ! 
I know not what I write. I received your letter at 
table. I could eat no more. The tears started from 
my eyes, and I/went into my own room. I could f 
only thank God with my tears; but He under- \ 
stands our tears ! 

Klopstock to Meta. 

Bemst, August 16. 
My Meta, were both the nights so dark ? They 
were indeed, but God preserved me fron) all the 



[ 152 ] 

I 

KtOPSTOCK TO MeTA. 

September 13. 
Mt poor little Meta^ your letter yesterday* made 
me quite miserable. I know not how you could 
discover from my letter that I should be so long, in 
coming. I feel ^ith you the whole weight of ab- 
sence ; but do not torment yourself with the idea 
that you may die^ and die without me. Neither is 
at all probable. You will perhaps think that I speak 
coldly on the subjed ; but this coldness of reason is 
/ necessary to us both^ not only that We may hot iigure 
ourselves by giving way to gloomy fears, but also that 
we may be the better able to submit with perfect re^ 
signation to the will of our God. This perfeil re- 
; signation is one of the most difficult, and at the same 
• time most consoling duties of Christianity. I'hese 
; days of our separation are days of trial, which call on 
; us to recolle6l that we are tried. — Even the most 
innocent and virtuous love should be subservient to 
the love of God. I hav^read again my *^ Ode on 
the Omnipotence of God," which I am printing in 
the Northern Spedlator, and my ideas of the universal 
presence of Him who alone deserves our adoration* 

♦ Her letter dated September 7. 



[ 153 3 

became very strong. When God gives me grace 
to pursue these ideas, then^ my Meta, I am not far 
from th^e ? He surrounds both thee and me. His 
hand is over us. God is where you are. God is 
where I am. We depend entirely on Him ; much 
more entirely than is generally supposed. We 
depend on Him even in all those things which least 
call our thoughts towards Him. His presence pre- 
serves our breath. He has numbered the hairs of 
our head. My soul is now in a state of sweet com- 
posure^ though mixed with some degree of sadness. 
,0 my Wife, whom God has given to me, be not 
careful — be not careful for the morrow ! 



Mbta to Klopstock. 

September 10. 
Yo o must not think that I mean 



any thing more than that I am as willing to die as to 
live, and that I prepare myself for both, for I do npt 
allow myself to look on either as a certainty/ Were , 
I to judge from circumstances, there is much more 
probability of life than death. But I am perfe£lly 
resigned to either, God^s will be done 1 — \ often 
wonder at the indifierence I feel on the subje^ when 



[ 154 ] 

I am so happy in this world.* O what is our re- 
ligion ! What must that eternal state be^ of which 
we know so little, while our soul feels so much ! 
More than a life with Klopstock! It does not now 
appear to me so hard to leave you and our child^ and 
I only fear that I may lose this peace of mind again, 
though it has already lasted eight months. I well 
know that all hours are not alike, and particularly 
the last, since death in my situation must be far 
from an easy death; but let the last hour make no 
impression on you. You know too well how much 
the body then presses down the soul. — ^Let God give 
what He will, I shall still be happy. A longer life 
with you, or eternal life with Him ! — But can you 
as easily part from me, as I from you ? You are to 
remain in this world, in a world without me ! You 
know I have always wished to be the survivor, be- 
cause I well know it is the hardest to endure : but 
perhaps it is the will of God that you should be left, 
a^ perhaps you have most strength.— O think where 

* She was very grateful for this happiness, but it did not at 
s3\ diminish her desire of a better world. In the last of her 
confessions, which she always used to write, she prays, 
f* May God continue to me the readiness which He has given 
me to exchange a life full of happiness for a still happier 
eternity." 



C iw ] 

lam going ; and as far as sinners can judge of each 
other, you may be certain thatl go there, (the humble 
hopes of a Christian cannot deceive,) and there 
you will follow me : there shall we be for ever 
united by love, which assuredly was not made to 
cease. — So also shall we love our child. At first 
perhaps the sight of the child may add to your 
distress, but it must afterwards be a great comfort to 
you to have a child of mine. I would wish it to 
survive me, though I know that most people would 
be of a different opinion. Why should I think 
otherwise ? Do I not intrust it to you and to God ? 
It is with the sweetest composure that I speak of this, 
yet I will say no more, for perhaps it may affe£i: you 
too much, though you have given' me leave to speak 
of it. How I thank you for that kind permission! 
My heart earnestly wished it^ but on your account I 

would not indulge the wish. 1 have done. I can 

write of nothing else. I am perhaps too serious, 
but it is a seriousness mixed with tears of joy. 

September 15. 

I Hope, yet tremble, for your letter to-day. O 

take not away my hope ! Set off to-piorrow. We 

have had since yesterday the finest weather, and the 

best north-east wind. You will come exadly with 



C i« ] 

the full moon. O set off ! Do not mb rac of my 
hope. Make me not so unhappy • — Let this be the 
last letter^ O come ! 

f 

From Klopstock. 

Bernst, Sept. 16- 
YouR letter to-day, my sweet Wife, has very 

much distressed me.* But before I say any thingof it, 
I must speak of my journey. This letter has agitated 
me so much that I cannot ansiver it to-day. It has 
made me not serious only, but dejefted. May our 
God do with us according to his will. He is the 
all-wise, and the all-gracious ! 

T cannot conceal from you that my absence at this 
time lies particularly heavy on my heart ; yet I must 
also tell you that there are very bright hours to me, 
when, though the thought of absence fills my mind, 
I have strength to refleft with composure that these 
are the hours of trial, and that it is here I must 
submit. All you say in your letter affefls me too 
much to-day : otherwise I would gladly speak of it 
with you. The thought of your death affe£ls me 
too. deeply ; th^t of absence makes me, for the reason 

* Her letter, d £tcd Sept. 10. 



. [ 157 J 

I have mentioned, cheerful. 1 will tell you how I 

feel a passage in my favourite 139th Psalm« ^^ If I 
take the wings of the morning, and remain in the , 
uttermost part of the sea, even there also shall thy 
hand hold me/' Beyond the uttermost sea, there 
art thou, my Love, and there too is our God, and 
there does his hand hold thee. It is a very pleasing 
thought 1 This I promise you, I will not stay one 
moment from you without absolute necessity ; 
and then when God has given us our child, and 
when the dear mother and her babe are with me,— 
I turn giddy when I think of it. — I must conclude. 
My whole heart is entirely, unspeakably yours ! 



Meta to Klopstock. 

September \Q. 
Your tho^ijightlessness could not have played 
me a worse trick than to send to Soroe the letter in 
which I hoped for certain information respecting your 
journey. I know not how I shall feel when I see 
you again. . When I think of it, I am agitated as 
when I think of bearing the first voice of my child ! 
Yesterday I went an airing for four hours. I could 
go no other way than the road to Lubeck, though I 



[ 158 J . 

• 

well knew you could not come so soon. It was not 
possible for me to drive any other way. Adieu till 
to-morrow. O may the letter to-morrow tell me 
that you have set off, — that I have written this letter 
in vain. — O my only beloved, come^ come, come ! 

Klopstock to Meta. 

JBemst, Sept. 1 9. 
O my Meta ! you say ^^ make me not so unhappy^ 
but come/'* How much that aflFefts me ! But the 
Captain does not sail till Thursday, as he says, and I 
do not believe he will sail then. He has not yet got 
lading enough. Let us yet endure this little time, 
my only Love ! My whole soul longs to see you 
again, biA I must not write of this at present; it 
affects me too much, and I wish to repress this emo- 
tion, because I wish to wait with composure and sub- 
mission for the day of joy. Do the saihe, my Meta! 
My hope that God would spare you to me, was yes- 
terday very strong. It became particularly so from 
the good account of your health. But I scarcely 
dare indulge this thought, it affefts me too pow- 
erfully.— Our God will order all things according 
to his Wisdom and love, O what true and peaceful 

* See her Letter, Sept. 15* 



happiness lies in that thou^t^ when we give ourselves 
entirely to it« 

I return to you for one moment only to say ho\¥ 
much I love you, and how tenderly I intreat you to 
feel my absence as little as possible. Compare the 
time when I left you, not knowing when I should 
retuTn ; J when I did not return till after so long an 
absence ; and now that I must be only a short time 
absent iVomyou, that my return is so near at hand, 
that I am only detained a little time by the Captain 
of the vessel, that we have so much reason to hope 
that God will bless thee with a healthy child, and me 
with the child and thee ! Let us reileS: on this hap- 
piness, and be grateful to the Giver* This refledion 
makes me quite cheerful. I press you to my heart, 
my Meta, 

^ Copenhagen, Sept. 23. 

At length, my M eta, I am in town to go on 
. board. I expe£t every moment to be called. Our 
God will conduft me. O how I love you, and how 
I rejoice m the thought of our meeting ! 

Lubecky Sept. 26, 

I Shall soon be In your arms, my only love. God 
be praised for my prosperous voyage ! How I re- 

X In the year 1752. 



[ 160 ] 

joice that I shall see you at last ! My MeUi^ how 
shall we thank our God for having preserved thee to 
me. and me to thee ! 



To Klopstock* 

September 26. 
I Must indulge my fancy, and write to you at 
Lubeck, to Copenhagen no more^— -now no more. 
God will be with you. I have prayed for you with: 
my firmest faith. I received your letter just as I 
was beginning to be quite deje&ed I have not time 
to write much. I should now drive every day to 
Wandsbeck to meet you^ if I had not for some days 
had a cold in my head and eyes. This will make 
me not look so chearful as I should have done if you 
bad arrived last week; but otherwise I am per- 
fe<9Jy well. 



This was her last letter to me. She died on the 
28th of Nov. 1 758. I once thought of writing, from 
what I and my friends in this place can recoiled of 
her last hours^ a description of her agonizing, yet 



happy death ; but I could not have gone through 
with it; at least I should have suffered too much. 
What have I not already suffered in performing my 
reitolution of supplying this description, by extra£l;;s 
from the letters of my friends! I rejoice that it is 
thus more than replaced* What do yre not owe to 
friendship, especially in the great affli6):ijons of life ! 
I should not satisfy my own feelings, if on this 
unsought occasion I forbore to mention that beside 
my old fri^ds, I have here found others, particularly 
since the death of my wife, who have really slym- 
pathised in my fate, I have often when I thought 
I was only with strangers, found myself amongst 
friends. I have made this pleasing disco^ry rathor 
from their silence, from a certain manner which I 
observed in them, than from what was said of my 
loss. In short, I must say that much friendly treat-* 
ment makes my residence in the native town of mjf 
beloved wife never tp be forgotten by me. 



M 



\ 



C 162 ] 



Letters written after the Death of 
Mrs. Klopslock. 



From Elizabeth Schmidt, the youngest 
SiSTER OF Mrs. Klopstock. 



Hamburg J Dec. 4. 

YOU have already received the sad account of the 
death of my beloved sister. She died as she had 
livedo with firm courage. She took leave of her 
husband. I prayed with her, and she departed in 
the gentkst manner. I closed her eyes. I can write 
no more. Thank God, with me, for the extraordi* 
nary strength, which he* bestowed upon me in that 
dreadful hour : it surpassed all my natural powers, 
as my experience fully convinces me. Thank God 
also for the strength, peace, and consolation, which 
he vouchsafes to Klopstock. I trust he will still be 
assisted to sumlount this heavy affli£i;ion. 



[ 163 ] 

FftoM Hartman Rahn* to Schmidt. 

Zubec, Dec. 4. 
The wise adorable Father ia Heaven has called 
to himself his virtuous child. O thou great Objeft 
of our adoration 1 grant that we may die the death 
of this excellent person^ — a pious^ tranquil^ holy 
death ! My poor wife is inconsolable^ and I must 
comfort her and myself; but I am not the Chdstian 
hero that you are. I praise the Almighty, that 
He has so powerfully supported you in this dreadful 
jiour. It is your duty to assist me in persuading 
Klopstock to come to us. Must not every moraedt 
passed in Hamburg renew his sufleriitgs and inward 
anguish ? And is not a calm silent anguish, like 
his, more injurious to the health than that which is 
louder and more vehement ? 



FnoM Johanna Victoria Rahn, Klop- 
stcck's Sister, to Eliz. Schmidt, 

,. ' i Lubecky Dec. 4. 

My dear Eliza, how much have you all suffered, 
and with what constancy have you endured it ! May 

*• He was married to a sister of Klppstock. 

M 2 



{ lfi4 J 

Goo preserve your health 1 What I have lo$t> my 
beloved Eliza, I can find no language to express. I 
loved her more than if she had been my own sister. 
But it was the vdll of God that thus it should be! 



Fkom Cramer* to Klopstock. 

4 

Copenhagen^ Dec. 5f 
I Am indeed inexpressibly afie£led by the totally 
unexpected intelligence^ which has cost me and my 
dearest wife so many tears. What should we be, 
with all our joys> and all our hopes, if eternity did 
not console us, and give us an assurance that we 

* &hall receive our departed friends- again, more glo^ 
rious and more perfect. Yes, my dear friend, Goz>'a 
consolations are the only true consolations. This 

. your glorified Meta, our most beloved friend, fel( 
amidst all her sufferings. This exalted her soul 
above this world at its entrance into her eternal rest; 
and this will also wipe all tears from your eyes. I 
rejoice, though my joy is mingled with sadness, in 

* Chancellor of the University of Kiel, and Chs^lain to , 
the King. One of Klopstock's earliest and most higixlf 
eiteenied£iefids« 



the mercy which God has shewn towards you both. 
May God support you under the sense of your, 
affliftion, and make you^ through his power^ aa 
example of that true sensibility^ which you so often 
describe in your poetical compositions as attendant 
on virtue. You will probably quit Hamburg soon. 
All your friends wish you to do so. May God pre- 
serve your healthy and console^ relieve^ and bless you 
through the power of religion. My wife desires me 
figain to assure you^ that s|ie takes the warmest and 
tenderest part in your sorrows. 

Once more^ God bless you^ and restore you to 
ease^ comfort^ and joy^ with all those who share 
your affliction. 



From Funke to Klopstqck. 

Copenhageuy Dec. 5. 
What can I write? I will not make the past 
event my subject ; for you must know how deeply 
I sympathize with you. Yet what can my grief be 
in comparison of yours? 0> could I but be at ease 
on your account^ — but I am all anxiety. My heart 
wavers between two objects : sometimes it turns to 
her who is gone, sometimes to you ; but on you it 



; 



. t 166 3 

rests, for, she is above our care. Could I In the 
slightest degree alleviate your sorrow, I should in so 
doing fulfil the ^ish of an angel; Dearest friend, 
will you not come to us) Remain not, I intreat 
you, in a place where every thing aroui^d reminds 
you of that which is already too deeply engraven on 
your heart. May God give you peace! May He 
strengthen and bless you 1 

I wish it were possi'ble that I could render myself 
in iiny manner useful to you ; for who reveres, who 
lovea, more sincerely than I do, the poet of the 
Messiah, the Christian^ the friend, the beloved of 
pur departed aneel? 

Klopstock to Cramer, 

Hamburg y Dec. 5. 
This is my Metals dying day,* and yet I am 
composed. Can I ascribe this to myself, my Cramer} 
Certainly not. I sleep very little, at other times I 
cannot do without sleep; and yet I am not ill, — often 
well. Thi^nks be to the God of comfort for all the 
favour He has shewn me ! Thank our Goj>, with 
jne, my Cramer. 

^ ' * A week after her death. 



C 167 3 

* 

I will now try to give you a more circumstantial 
account. Her sufieringf continued from Friday tili 
Tuesday afternoon^ about four o'clock 3 but they 
were the most violent from Monday evening about 
eight. On Sunday morning I supported first mysel f, 
and then her^ by repeating that without our Father's 
will not a hair in her head could fall 3 and more 
than once I repeated to her the following lines from 
my last Ode. One time I was so much afieded 
as to be forced to stop at every line. I was to have 
repeated it a)l to h^r^ but we were i|iterrupted| 

<< Though unseen by human eye, 
** My Redeemer's hand is nigh ; 
** He has pouPd salvation's light 
^< Far within the vale of night ; 
^< There will CjQd my {»tepa controul, 
*f There his presence bless my soul. 
« L0RD9 whate'er my sorrows be, 
♦« Teach me to look up to Thee I'* 

Some afTefiing circumstances I must omit; Iwill 
tell you them some other time. 

When I began to fear for her life, (and I did^his 
sooner than any one else,) I from time to time whis- 
pered something in her ear concerning God, but 
iK> as not to let her perceive tny apprchensioni^ I 



C ^88 1 

know little of what I said; only in general I know 
that. I repeated to her how much I was strengthened 
by the uncommon fortitude graciously vouchsafed 
to her; and th^t I now reminded her of that to 
which we bad so often encouraged each ' other*— 
^ttk&. resignation. When she liad already suf- 
fered greatly^ I said to her with much emotion^ 
*^ The Most Merciful is with thee/* I saw how 
she felt it. Perhaps she now first guessed that I 
thought she would die. I saw this in her counte- 
nance^ L afterwards often told her (as often as I 
could go into the room^ and support the sight of her 
sufierings) how visibly the grace of God was with 
her. How could I refrain from speaking of the 
great comfort of my soul ! 

I came in just as she had been bled. A light 
having been brought near on that account, I saw 
her face clearly for the first time after many hours. 
Ah, my Cramer, the hue of death was on it ! But 
that God who was so mightily with her, supported 
me too at the sight. She was better after the bleeding) 
but soon worse again. I was allowed but very little 
time to take leave of her. I had some hopes that 
I might return to pray with her. I shall never cease 
to tbftuk God for the grace tie gave me at this part- 



J 



C 169 3 

ing. I said, ^^ I will fulfil my promise, my Meta, 
and tell you that your life, from extreme weakness, 

is in danger/' You must not expe3 me to relate 

every thing to you. I cannot recoHeft the whole. 
She heard perfe&ly, and spoke without the smallest 
difEculty. I pronounced over her the name of the 
Father^ the Son, and the Holy Ghost, *' Now the 
will of Him who inexpressibly supports thee,— his 
will be done!" . ' Let Him do according to his 
will,' said she ; ^ He will do welL* She said 
this in a most expressive tone of joy and confidence. 
^^ You have endured like an angel. God has been 
with you. He will be with you. His mighty name 
be praised ! The Most Merciful will support you I 
Were I so wretched as not to be a Christian, I should 
now become one/' Something of this sort, and yet 
more, I said to her, in a strong emotion of trans* 
port. Eliza says we were both full of joy.— -** Be 
my guardian angel, if our God permit.'^ * You 
have been mine,' said she. " Be my guardian 

angel,*' repeated I, " if our God permit." * Who 
would not be so,' said she. I would have hastened 
away. Eliza said, *' Give her your hand once more.'* 
I did so, and know not whether I said any thing. 
I halted away,*— then went into my own room,<Qnd 



[ 170 ] 

prayed. God gave me much strength in prayer; I 
a^ked for perfedk resignation ; — but how was it, my 
Cramer^ that I did not pray for her, which would 
have been so natural ? Probably because she was 
already heard above all that I could ask or think I — • 

When I was gone out^ she again asked fUlza 
whether it was likely she might die, and whether 
her death was so near ? Once she« told her that 
she felt nothing. Afterwards she felt some pain. 
She said to Eliza that God had much to forgive ia 
ber^ but she trusted in her Redeemer. On another 
occasion Eliza said to her that God would help her; 
she answered, *^ into Heaven.'* As her head 
sunk on the pillow, she said, with much animation, 
*^ it is over !" She then looked tenderly on Eliza, 
and with yet unfixed eyes listened while she thus 
prayed, *^ The blood of Jesus Christ cleanse 
X\ict from alt sin*'' O sweet words of eternal life ! 
After some expressions of pain in her countenance, 
it became again p*>rfe6ily serene, — and thusshedied! 

I will not complain, my Cramer; I will be 
thankful that in so severe a trial God has so strength* 
ened me. 

At parting she said to me very sweetly, " Thou 

ilt follow me !" May my end be like thine 1 O 



[ ni ] 

might I now, for one tnoment, weep on her bosom f 
For I cannot refirain from tears, nor does God re- 
quire it of me. 



GlESECKE* TO KlOPSTOCK. 

Suedlinburgy Dec. 6.. 

Though I have already frequently taken up the 
pen, and laid it down again, yet I once more resume 
it, to assure you, that my H - and I weep witU 
you, and pray for you. Who amongst all your 
friends is better qualified to pity you than I am ? 
Who has known her longer, who was better ac- 
quainted with her ? What a friend have I myself 
lost in her ! ' 

I know but too well what you must suffer. I feel 
in all its dreadful force this sudden separation from 
your departed saint, after having been blest for so 
short a time with her society; and the annihilation 
of the best, the noblest, and the most rational hopes 
pf happiness on earth. And although I know that 
this separation will not be for ever, and that your 
hopes are not all annihilated, yet I tremble for the 

♦ One of Klopstock's academical friends, and much be^ 
loved by him. 



[ 172 ] 

conflict which you must at present endure. Yours 
is a heavy trial ; but^ my dear friend^ God^ who 
lays it upon you^ will not leave you without support, 
A ." has given me great pleasure by the as- 
surance that God has already begun to glorify 
Himself in you ; for you have said^' <' She is not far 
from me/' Indeed to a Christian the distance is 
not great between earth and heaven. May Goo 
Confirm in you the consolation arising from "this 
important truth ! And now^ my dear Klopstock^ 
exert all your strength, and consider that you owe 
an example to your friends^ and to your readers. 
Lament the loss of your Meta, with all the tender*- 
seas which she deserves : we lament it with you | 
but we intreat you not to yield too much to your 
afilidlioni reasonable as it is. Consider your im- 
portant vocation. Ccmsider your friends^ your mo- 
ther^ your sisters. Your dear mother will write 
herself; you may easily imagine what she isufTers ; 
bat it will be a great relief to her mind, to know 
that you are not entirely depressed by your affliAion. 



t 17$ 3 

Elizabeth Schmidt TO GiESECKfi. 

Hamburg y Dec. 6. 

How much pleasure tirould youi: letter aad yonf 
sweet Ode* haye given me^ had I received ibem al 
another time. But now^ I have Scarcely been abte 
to read the Ode 3 — it afleS;s me too much. What 
I feel^ 2/^u may easily imagine. What have I not 
lost ! But I will not— I must not complain. Klop- 
stock forbids me. I have now first learnt the liiU 
power of religion. But I will to-day write nothing 
but a circumstantial account of our beloved friend's 
last hours.— —-She endured her sufferings with for« 
titude and resignation seldom equsdled. Klopstdbk, 
who had determined not to leave her^ cbuld not sup- 
port it. He went out^ and came in again^ all night 
)ong. About ten in the morning, from extreme 
fatigue ho doubt^ she had some faintiogs ; but they 
lasted only a short time^ and then she came to herself 
again. She was always patient. She smiled on 
Klopstock, kissed hishand^and spokequite cheerfully. 

Now the trying scene began. KlopstocI^ went 
m, and informed his wife that her life was in danger. 
She answered with perfect: composure^ ^^ What our 

* This geatlemaa was a oiych<«dmired lyric poet.. 



God wills is right !** They took leave of each other; 
but that I will not describe. Klopstock shall do it 
himself after a while. When he was gone, I went to 
the bed, and said, ^^ I will stay with you J' ^ God 
bless you for it, my Eliza !' said she, and she looked 
at me with the calm lerene smile of an angeL She 
then said to me, * Is my death then so near?' ^' I 
cannot pronounce that," I answered. 'Yes — my 
husband has told me all that may happen. I know 
all.' *' I know too that you are prepared for alU 
You will die tranquil and happy." ' Oh, God 
must then forgive me much ; but I think of my 
Redeemer, in whom I trust.* 

At one time she said, ' I do not feel much, 
Eliza; very little.' '^ O that is well! God will 
soon help you." ' Yes, to Heaven^ said she.-^ 
Now she was still, but appeared to feel pain. Sooa 
after she laid her head back, and said, ' It is over!' 

m 

and at the -same moment her face became so com • 
posed, that the change was observable to every one* 
A moment before it expressed nothing but pain, 
now nothing but peace. I began to pray, in short 
exclamations, such as she had taught me, and thus^ 
after a few minutes, she died ; — so soft, so stili^ 
so calm ! — — — 



On Monday she was buried, with her son in her 
arms, in the same grave where three of my children 
now rest ; for you do not yet know that, a week 
before, I lost my youngest little girK Think what 
I, weak as 1 am, have lived through; but thank God 
with me, who so supernaturally strengthened me, 
that I was able, with courage and firmness' not my 
own, to stand by our Meta in her last moments. 

God preserve you and those you love! God 
preserve Klopstock, to whom He now gives such 
uncommon grace and support. I can write no more. 
I wish you may be able to read this, ■ 

Stockhousb* to Klo^pstock. 

Luneburgy Dec, 9. 
Comfort — ah, who can comfort you? From 
the hand which has smitten you, can you alone 
€xpe£l it ; and to a man, who, like you, has been 
accustomed to make the noblest feelings of religion 
his employment, I think this is already a source 
of consolation. May God give it to you in the fullest 
measure ; and pour the balm of heavenly peace Into 
Jrou^ wounded heart ! Offer up all to Him^ and you 

♦ Redor of a public schooL 



r 176 ] 

lirill receive all from Him. After this separation, 
though a short one, from her you love, (whom God 
will restore to you, and restore iii glory,} your path 
must indeed appear more lonely, more roi^ and 
tedious ; but what is it compared with that eternity, 
that blissful eternity, to which it leads ? When the 
short dream of life is over, when the dismal phan-» 
toms vanish, at the brightness of the everlasting day, 

<* Then shall no fate again divide the souls 

** Which, Nature, thou didst for each other form."* 



H. Rahn to £. Schmidt. 

Luheckj Dec. 9. 
You must allow me, my dear Eliza, to make 
i!ome remarks on your letter. That for some hours 
every day you talk with Klopstock of nbthiqg but 
Meta, and try to recoiled all her last words, looks, 
and actions, and in so doing are not melancholy, 
only tranquilly and sweetly sad, (these are your own 
words,) this I fear is food for his afflidlion, and 
food which, though sweet, will rather keep up than 
allay the emotions which deprive him of necessary 

* From one of Klopstock^s Odes* 



rest. That OoD can wonderfully strengthen and 
support him, — Ah, my £li2a, how can I doubt it ? 
But, my dearest friend, is it the less our duty to use 
every possible human precaution to cut off all su9«> 
tenance to his secret grief and pain? I am sure 
you will pardon me for venturing to name to you 
things which you know better than I do ; because it 
ijs often, and particularly in such circumstances, not 
quite useless to be reminded of what we well know. 
One thing ^ore I must say ; that I envy you for 
havihg been present at the death of bur blessed sister. 
What may not be learnt from every death-bed, and 
what must not you have learnt from such a death 1 
God give a blessing to it in your soul^ in time^ and 
in eternity 1 

Cramer to Klopstock. 

Copenhagen^ Dec. 19. 
1 Thank you for the letter which I received from 
you by the last post* How much were we afTefiied 
by the interesting account which it gave us of the 
sufferings of our sainted friend, of her fortitude, of 
the comfort which you afforded her, and of your 
own noble sensibility ! Our tears again flow^ t But 

N 



[ 179 ] 

m the iriid^t of the mefancholy interest which we 
feike in your loss^ (might we not rather^ in a religious 
feense^ call it gain?) we feel much satisfa&ion in 
the proper and Chrtslian-Hke state of your mind* 
Thus IS our OaDy the All-Merciful, ever at our 
#ight hand daring the most awful trials* May He ^ 
itill continqe with you ! And we sincerely wish 
that He may strengthen and console you ever more 
, and more 1 In the mean time endeavour^ first through 
I gratitude to Him> and next through friendship for 
[ tis^to take all possible care of your health, which is so 
I precious* to us. I must intreat you most earnestly^ 
if it be in your power, to return with L— — . I 
ipep^at my wish.^ May God strengthen you, ami- 
fort you, and give you peace through the power of 
religion, ever more and more ! I am, with the 
warmest fKendship^ entirely yout's. 



. E, Schmidt to.Klqpstock's Mother; 

• > • • • » 

Hamburg J Dec. 12. 

God will and must comfort us all. He will 

comfort and support us with his grace, that we may 

be able, to bear the heavy cross which He has laid on 

us, according tbllis will. ^ 



[ 179 3 

* YoOr chief anxiety must now be fer youdr dear 
son ; and I wish you could yourself see biip. Whil 
a miracle does Gop exhibit in him*. He presenta 
an example to us all how- powerfully Gop aupporta 
those who are his^ even under the most trying cir>* 
cumstances. You will readily believe that we do 
our utmost to cheer and amuse our dear brother-* 
but you could better imagine it, if you knew how 
much we all love your son. How I, in particular, 
respect and love him, I cannot express to you* I 
loved my blessed sister most tenderly, that is known 
to all who were acquainted with us ; but I now feel 
that I do not love our Klopstock less than I loved 
her. You may hence conclude, that from my heart 
I shall do every thing that can in any degree con* 
tribute to soothe his grief. He will probably write 
to you himself, and tell you, that on account of hi? 
health, he does jiot intend to travel this winter, but 
will wait till spring. 

The night before her death I was alone with her. 
She suffered much, buf with great composure. She 
talked a good deal to me. O happy hours which 
God gave me with her^ even then, though deeplj^ 
tinged with sonow I Amdngst other things she said^ 
^' O £liza^ how should I now fee), if I had not em? 



/ 

/ 



[ 180 ] 

ployed the whole nine months in preparing for my 
death ! Now my pains will not suffer me to pray 
so continually^ to think so worthily of God, as I 
am at other times accustomed^ and would now most 
wish to do/* 



GiESECKE TO E.Schmidt. 

Quedlinburgy Dec. 13. 
Your letter has anticipated mine. On Wed<> 
nesday it was not possible for me to write more after 
my letter to Klopstock. How much you must have 
suffered^ my dear Eliza ! Out of Hamburg there is 
no one who can be so sensible of that as I am^ be* 
cause I best know how much you loved our departed 
saint. The loss of her must at any time have been 
a severe misfortune to you ; but to lose her at such 
a time^ and in such a manner ! But Klopstock for- 
bids you to munxiur. — he who has lost much more^ 
and who can judge of your feelings by his own. 
How dear is he to me ! How much do I grieve 
for him as my own friend and yours^ so iiearly allied 
to you, — worthy to Have possessed his beloveds- 
worthy to lament her loss— and (yet may it be laid) 
-wotthy to receive her again la a better worM. 



; 



C 181 ] 

I thank you for the circumstantial account which 
you hare given me of our Meta's deaths though 
yott have not answered all the questions which I 
should wish to ask. I thank my dear Klopstock for 
requesting you to give me this account. Deeply do 
my H— and I feel and participate in your loss ! On 
that which we ourselves have sustained I will be 
silent. 

We sympathise with you in the death of your 
youngest daughter. Three of your children have 
now past into eternity ; and we shall allfollow those 
who are already departed. May God support us 
with his consolation as often as we shall undergo a 
separation from those whom we love. Though we 
are to submit to every calamity ordained by Him^ He 
does not forbid a settled^ soft melancholy : such is^ I 
know^ the melancholy of Klopstock ; such is yours j 
such ought mine to be also. But even the softest 
melancholy may become prejudicial to us. Let not 
this be the case with you and Klopstock. Encou- ^ 
rage him^ when you shall find a favourable oppor* 
tunity^ to take a journey to Quedlinburg ; it will 
afford great consolation to his mother^ who is most 
anxiously concerned for him^ and greatly afflided on 
her own account at the loss of «uch a beloved daugh* 



t Ids ] 

ter-in-law^ who^ as she is coatinually repeating, 
was entirely formed for her son* We will mourn 
with him; and when he shall be able^ he shall 
give me an account of his parting with his be^* 
loved. God. tries him by severe affliction ; but he 
will find him faithful* And consider, my dear Elizaj 
bow you have yourself been Supported. I did not 
imagine you could have survived this event, though 
lam sensible that God gives us the strength which 
is requisite for us. 

Your intelligen<^e is too distressing to admit of 
my dwelling any longer on the subje6): at present. 
It is evident that Klopstock has Sally resigned him- 
self to the will of that GoD, who gave to him hi* 
Meta, without doubt that he might enjoy her society 
for a longer time than the short period of four tran* 
sitory years. 

May God comfort you, your poor Mother, your 
sister Dimpfel, and all who participate in your sor- 

rows. F and G assure Klopstock of their 

sincere sympathy. How many excellent people 
moiirn nis loss ! 



[ 183 j 

Mrs. Riedenoer to Klopstock's Mother^ 

LeipsiCj Dec. 15. 
You can scarcely imagine how much I was affect- 
ed by the death of your amiable and virtuous 
daughter. How great is the loss of a husband ia 
€uch a wife^ and how great that of a whole family ta 
such a sister and friend ! I sympathise with you 
most cordially. But who, without guilty can murmur 
against the decrees of an All- wise Providence ? Goo 
Jias removed this excellent woman from the world, 
in order to render her more perfe6l:. Her painful 
death has been but her passage into that eternal 
Ktate^ in which she is now far happier than we aire. 
Yet we may hope to become sharers in her felicity^ 
and to meet her again^ never to be |)arted more. 
How much satisfa&ion does it afford me that I dave 
•enjoyed an acquaintance with this heroic woman ! 
But it was not permitted to continue in this world ; 
that happiness is reserved fpr another! 

FCJMKK TO K1.OPSTOCS:. 

^ Copenhagen, Dec. I a. 

How kind is my dearest Klopstock in allowing 
' me the melancholy satisfaction of talking to himt>f 



[ »8* ] 

biis loss ! How high a value does it give your friend 
in his own eyes^ to hear that by his letter he has 
has darted a beam of cheeriulness into the soul of 
Klopstock ! You wish^ niy dear friend^ that I may 
soon write ^gain. How can Ij for a single day^ 
delay to fulfil so flattering a request ? What is a 
letter^ compared with what I would do for you^ if I 
had the power ? - . . - 

Ipraise God with you^ dearest friend, for the 
peace He has vouchsafed to your soul. Yet I shall 
not be quite free from anxiety on your account^ till I 
am assured that your body admits the refreshment 
of sleep^ which it now despises. What shall I say 
to you ? I can write only on'one subjeft to have any 
claim on your attention^ and that is too tender. 
How shall I so gently touch your wounded soul^ as 
■not to give it pain ? — I will try, ^ I will take the hint 
from your own letters. You desii:e'Gramer to tell 
you his thoughts on the views of Gbn iti such an 
extraordinary trial 5 and though it never canie into 
my head to suppose I could say any thfng that you 
did not far more perfeilly know and feel, yet I think 
that meditations of this sort must now be so natural 
and pleasing to your hearty that I know not how to 
choose better. Here then are some of my thoughtSi| 



C 185 ] 

Sbe was ripe for berbirth into the life of an angeh 
Long already had she sought her whole happiness in 
love^and knowledge^ the fountains whence Angela 
draw their bliss. The. favour of her Heavenly Father^ 
who so soon accounted her worthy of immortality^ 
without first proving her by many years of suffering, 
has been visibly great towards her. He doubtless 
saw she was an obedient docile child, that would be 
willingly led by kindness and love ; for how happy 
was she during the Tatter years of her life, and almost 
to the hour of her translation ! Her best, her 
dearest^ only friend, her guardian angel on earth, (as 
her heart, overflowing with the tenderest love, called 
him even in her last moments,) was all she wished 

for here. He felt It, and made her happy, and the 

• .. . _ , 

remembrance of her will be his greatest earthly hap- 
piness, as long as he remains behind^ In the. midst 
of those blissful days, she passed into the infinitely 
superior glory of her Father and Redeemer, and her 
departure is mourned by many excellent friends who 
loved her, and who now support themselves with 
the hope of seeing her again. Tn the hour of dis* 
solution only did she feel the lot of mortality, but, 
praised be the God of mercy ! no longer than while 
the gun a few times ran his daily course \ and those 



[ 186 ] 

^hort sufferings^ in which by her stedfast patience 
she 8b willingly and nobly gave the last proof of obe* 
dtence to her Heavenly Father^ must have rendered 
her entrance into the land of bliss the more en* 
chanting. 

" For when the short repose of death Is past, 

«* Then transport follows; — hires — eternal bliss f"* 

In like manner the short separation from her friend 
win make his re-union with her so much the more 
delightfuL He suffers indeed, — the sad survivor,— 

4 

. but is he not rewarded by the consoling thought, that 
! in some measure he suffers in her stead ? Would 
she have had strength to bear her lot, had it been 
that of her deserted friend ? To sink under the 
stroke of such a fate, had been in her, who pos- 
liessed every perfedion of the female heart, almost / 
a virtue. — ^But he;is a man. 

Permit me now, my beloved friend, to make some 
tefIe£lions of another sort. Should you consider 
some of them as the dreams of an unrestrained ima- 
gination, I can only answer that I write them with 
the wish that they may, not unpleasantly, employ 
you for a few minutes. 

♦ Klopstock* 



[ 187 ] 

We are both agreed^^ my dear Klopstock^ in thinks 
ing that the present life is a Gymnasium, where by 
various exercises and conflids we are prepared for 
higher callings^ for greater perfedion; or^ more 
suitably to my present ideas, I may compare it to the 
first scenes of a drama, which only propose what is 
afterwards to'be unravelled. But to render the sequel 
intelligible, I must first give you a slight idea of some 
singular hypotheses, which indeed I consider only in 
that light, but which have given rise and form to my 
present thoughts* 

I am inclined from various causes to believe that 
in a future state the union of souls will still subsist^ 
and will then be of a far more intimate atid perfed: 
kind. It must indeed be supposed that very few 
connexions will continue as they were here formed; 
for how seldom do souls formed for each other meet ! 

•* Now in far distant cHmes their lot is cast, 

" And now long ages roll their course between,"* 

According to these ideas, those marriages must be 
considered as the happiest, in which each party, in 
his proper sphere, has an equal capacity for perfedion; 
and which have laid in this life the foundation of 

* Klopstock's Ode to Bodnier. 



C 188 1 

their eternal friendship. How great an influence 
both these causes must have on their earthly hap* 
piness^ I leave to yourself to judge; for you best 
can. In this point of view^ you, my excellent 
friend^ must be one of the happiest of men; for was 
sihe not^ as Cramer justly said^ ^' Klopstock in 
feminine beauty V* And of this I am certain^ that 
your connexion is one of those few whose duration 
will be eternal. For this cause you were to meet on 
earth, and possess each other as long as was needful 
to lay the deepest foundation for the tenderest and 
strongest, — for an everlasting friendship. How per- 
iedly have you fulfilled this destiny ! But that 
other views might also be fulfilled, she was to be 
translated to the world of spirits before her friend. 
There was to be another soul, sprung from them, on 
whom the love of both might center, to augment 
their happiness. That this also might have its 
proper perfcflions, the first embryo alone of its ex« 
istence was unfolded, and so soon as the tender bud 
was formed in the maternal bosom, it was transplant* 
ed to a happier climate, and tended by its glorified 
mother and the angels. Without the aptitude to err 
and sin, this infant angel, who perhaps is an image 
of the united virtues of those from whoih he sprung^ 



C 189 J 

enters Jnto the society and instrii<Slionofthe perfe3:. 
Free from the mortal covering, he learns to knoiv the 
Godhead with higher powers, and the universe with 
purer and finer organs. The tender mother perhaps 
will one day meet you with this darling of her heart. 
This I confidently hope to hear from you in future, 
if I be not myself a spe6lator of the heavenly scene. 

All these dreams are, I think, at least agreeable to 
analogy. All the happiness which creatures derive 
from each other, arises from their difference in some 
respefts, and their great /similarity, or sympathy, iii 
others. If such fiftions please us, without ap- 
pearing true, they at least give an impulse to our 
thoughts.,-— And is happiness of merely human ere* 
ation so delightful? How glorious, then is that 
which He, whose thoughts and ways ace infinitely 
above ours, has prepared for them that love Him f 
bliss which, according to his own gracious ex- 
pression, has never entered into the heajt of man, 

I will not venture, dearest friend, to speak of those 
designs of Providence which regard yourself alone j 
though they may perhaps be. the most important of 
all. You will think of them much more nobly, 
you will feel them far more strongly, and the Spirit 
of God himself will teach them to you, I will only 



C 190 ] 

try to consider^ for a kw minutes^ the secondary ob- 
jeSts ; the efFe^ls to be produced through your means 
on others. 

Sinc^ I am convinced that the whole spiritual 
world is connected by certain principles^ as universal 
as attrafiion in the material worlds I must be of opi- 
nion that far less important events^ that almost every 
word, perhaps even every thought, has its conse*- 
quences in the world of spirits ; and not for a tipie 
only^ but in some sense for eternity. At present 
indeed we can only speak of what is visible. 

Since I consider your Messiah, less as a master- 
piece of human genius, than as a work for the glpry 
of religion and the propagation of piety and virtue 
in more than one age, and more than one nation ; 
' since I am convinced how great a deed he does, wlib 
} makes one pious thought alive and adive in a human 
\ soul; since I know how a single passage in a beau- 
tiful book, or in a religious conversation, has often 
had an influence on me for many days together, (and 
I shall, to all eternity, thank those to whom I'am in-' 
debted for the smallest benefit of this sort;) I do not 
thiok it an unimportant secondary objed: of this your 
trial, if it but give you some new ideas \ if it awaken 
in your mind some great and strong emotions, before 



[ m 3 

unknown to you ; if it throw you into that state of 
happy inspiration, when your thoughts bum within 
you^^ndgive an impulse to your expressions^ which^ 
proceeding from a soul in an uncommon situation, 
will be the more likely to make their way to the 
hearts of those who are in similar circumstances j-— 
nay, should it only have more distant efFetSls than 
these on the perfection and e^Ttensive utility of your 
works ; and such efTeCb it must have. 

Anumg these secondary views, I reckon also the 
tffeGt which the account of the departure of your now 
immortal Love will produce on all the friends of 
that angiel ; and how many virtuous friends she had ! 
The best should sometimes be reminded that they 
are fallen ; that death is a punishment ; as they should 
also be led to feel the infinite value of the redemption 
by Jesus Christ, whichextra&s from this punish* 
ment its bitterness, and renders it a blessing. The 
thought of death, as it arises on such an occasion, is 
astonishingly beneficial. The best have their hours 
of indolence , but time stays not his course. This 
life, the seed time, which ends with the moment of 
death, becon^s, by such awakening, more import- 
ant 5 we feel more forcibly the exhortation, ^^ lei 
us not be weary in welUdoing, for in due time we 



C 193 ] 

( 

shall reap/' Life seems shorter; death j^earcr. In 
a word, all useful knowledge^ which oftenrj^ but theory 
in our niinds^ at such a time, becomes .practice. . 

You, my dearest friend,. have the merit, that all 
such views are fulfilled in some measure at your ex- 
pense* I call it a merit, for I know that you will 
reap the most glorious fruit from it. J again repeat 
that I do not venture to touch on the ends which re- 
gard yourself aloue, for on that subject you best can 
think, and feel, and speak; and yet you will here 
understand only a small part of them. Beyond the 
grave the full light shall first beam on you. I know 
that in the" mean time you will adore the dispen- 
sations of God. ^^ Thou wilt thank Him with 
Ihy song." 

Suffer me to hint at one thing more, which to me 
brings much comfort. Will not her death be one 
day less grievous to you ? What is there remaining 
on earth, that in so high a degree possesses your heart? 
Does Clarissa at any moment apppear greater, than 
when she raises herself above the most dreadful in- 
telligence she could have received, with the thought, 
*' The AirMiGHxr will have me depend on no one 
but Himself.'* 



C 19^ 3 

We are called to high purposes. Human friend- 
ships are of little value, if they serve not to kindle 
in us a desire for immortality ; and without doubt 
they are given us for that end, for when docs the 
soul more ardently long after it, than on the bosom 
of a friend whom we wish to possess for ever ? Cer*- 
tainly no hours of my life have fled more happily 
than those that I formerly spent in such feelings, with 
two friends, of whom one is now an angel. My 
whole soul glows with rapture, when I recall the 
memory of those hours. But I have been deprived 
of them since I left Saxony. — Friendship must be 
ripened to a perfe6t sincerity and heart-felt confi- 
dence, before it can burst into such blossoms; 
before it can, by its own native heat, put forth this 
its most delicious fruit. In such moments we 
forget ourself and our friend, we see only higher 
objefts. We fly hand in hand to Heaven, and with 
undazzled eyes behold the sun. We are never hap- 
pier in friendship, though at the time we do not seem 
to feel it. I hoped soon to have enjoyed such scenes 
again, when half a year ago you quitted us, and I 
unknowingly took my last leave of the Angel who 
now beholds and enjoys what we still hope for. 
God who sees into infinity has thus decreed ! 



\ 



t m 1 

: Will you not^ my best loved friend^ soon come to 
qs ? Be my guide ia the journey which is yet before 
us both. May the Almiorty ble^s the friend of 
Wy soul : — ^bless him for ever and ever if 

.4* As it is pf (samed tbat every person who has read this letter mnst 
wish to become more acquainted with the writer^ I will here insert 
the account of his character, which is given bj Professor Cramer, in 
his work entitled, ''Klopstock, er und uber ihn." 

*' The number of Klopstock's friends was augmented in the year ■ 
1756;, by two excellent metx, who gained his ^hole heart. One pf 
fhem was I'vnke, at that time a Very young man, whom Gellert 
recommended to my Father as a tutor for me and my brothers* I ' 
can. never' think of him without feeling the tenderest love and gra* 
titnde. I have to thank him for the greatest*part oC what I learned - 
in my youth, and I am indebted to him for much more than know« 
ledge,— for the early formation of my mind to integrity, indepen* 
dence, and equanimity. He always educated me'with kindness, and 
snggested to me every inatniction, without forcing it npon me; for 
bis method was natural^ simple, a^d easy. To him I v^onld ^illinglj 
er^ct a nionument, but it is not requisite : he has erected one to 
himself, before the public, in several works, not voluminous indeed, 
bat of so much the richer intrinsic value; and in the little circk of 
hfi social e^ erttonsi, by the universal esteem with whi^b h^ ^9* 
regarded at Magdeburg, where he was the head of a school which his 
diligence soon increased from the number of forty to more than an 
hundred .—Happy Magdeburg» to possess such an instructor within 
its walls I His various talents and acquirements, added to his 
benevolent, friendly, feeling heart, and qoick discernment of cha- 
racter, rendered him acceptable to every one. To a perfect know* 
ledge of the ancient languages^ and of classical literature^ he united 






C w ] 



KlOPSTOCK.TO GlltSBCI^B. 

Hamburgh Dec. 20. . 
Eliza and I are sitting opposite to each other^ and 
both writing to you. She is copying my letter to 
Cranier for you. How I thank you for your last ! 
Much real comfort was contained in it. Also for 
your excellent fragment of a prayer, which gave me 

a taste for the beautiful, the sublime, and the useful, "bf modem 
times* Except Klopstock and Vossy Germanj has perhaps never 
produced an equally proband ^ud excellent Imguist. I|e perfectlj. 
aaderstood both French and English, though he did not speak them; 
and as he early dedicated himself to theology, that profession in- 
duced him to study Hebrew, Arabic, and other Oriental language!. 
He also made himself acquainted with Danish, whilst he Hved with, 
ny father. He composed some excellent hymns. He understood, 
music, sung at Concerts* in Copenhagen^ played on the harpsichord^ 
and was well versed in composition. It may easily be imagined 
how much his love of poetry, and knowledge of languages, recom* 
nended him to those great jneu who have contribnied so much to the 
perfection of our own.— lo our house, he was not merely a tutor* 
but on various occasions an adviser and assistant to my father, and a 
sincere sharer in all his domestic joys, sorrows, and cares; an indit- 
pentible member of our family \ respected by every one, belaved 
by all good men, and the confidential friend of Klopstock, Basedown 
Schlegel,. Rothe, and of all who distinguished themselves in that 
circle, by knowledge, by wit, by^talents for writing, or by the social 
virtues/* 

O 2 



[ 19« ] 

much strength* I was greatly affefted by the ideas of 
prayer and. acceptance to which it gave rise. 

I was already at Altona when this letter arrived, 
for t went there the evening after my Meta's death, 
after having seen my dead son, but not my wife: I 
dreaded too much the return of that image* 

I forgot to mention what follows, in my lettet 
to Cramer. Should I in future recolle^l any thing 
else, I will write it to you. 

Twice or thrice my Meta looked at me, without 
speaking a word, and then to Heaven, in such a man- 
net that it is utterly impossible for me to describe it. 
—I understood hex perfectly. I cannot tell you with 
what a mixture of sorrow, of confidence in God^ 
and of certdnty that she was dying, she looked froot 
me to Heaven. Never, never,— though often in 
sorrow and m joy have I looked up with her to 

* , ■ ■ 

Heaven, — nevcsr did I see her so I The situation of 
a dying person is so singular^ it seems to belongs 
neither to this world nor the next. — I should have 
much to repeat, if I could with any degree of accu-^ 
racy remember what from time to time I whispered 
|o her, though in a very few words ; knowing that 
she understood my meaning. Had not hersufTerings 
so pierced my soul, I should have been more ma^tei; 



[ w ] 

of myself^ I should have been able to aft more bn 
design^ and have remembered more, — ^What I said 
to her from time to time was chiefly stronger feeling 
of comfort which conquered the feelings of pain. 

Eliza has just now for the first time shewn me 
your letter. I could almost quarrel with her for not 
shewing it to me sooner. Your letters^ my Giesecke^ 
have peculiar power to console me ; there is some« 
thing refreshing in them. Youmust often write tome* 

My Meta left a paper with Eliza^ on which^ besides 
some other diredions^ she had written what she 
would have on her coffin. It consists of two pas- 
sages from the eleventh book of the Messiah. The 
•oul of the penitent Thief speaks : 

<< Was this then death? 
^ Q left yet sudden change! — ^What shall I call thee? 
<< No more— pno more thy name be death.— And thou» 
^ Corruption's dreaded powVy how changed to joy 1 
^ Sleep then companion of my first existence^ 
^ Seed sown by GoO| to ripen for the harvest!'' 

The soul of the Thief continues speakings while 
Uie etherial body forms around it; 

** O what new life I feel! 
^ Being of beings^ how 1 rise! Not ontf 
*^ A thousand steps I rise! And yet I feeli j 



[ 198 3 

/ 

f< Aidranring still in glory, I shall soar ^ 

*« Above these thousand steps. — ^Near and naore near» 
*< (Not in his works alone, these beauteous worlds,) 
« I shall behold th' Eternal, face to face!" 

I too wished to put something on the cof&n^ and 
I chose the following lines from the second stWM 
of n)y Ode^ 

** Though unseen by human eye, * * 

•* My Redeenjer's hand is nigh. 
<<He has pour'd salvation's light 
** Far within the vale of night." 



Basedow to Klopstock. 

January 13. 
I Received your letter at Copenhagen; otherwise 
I should have answered it sooner. Your other letter 
was sent to me by Cramer. The agreement between 
them aflefled me extremely. I should be more S;ur« 
prised at the state of your mind^ if I were less sen- 
sible of the power of religion. Praise be to Hbn, 
who has brought life and immortaltty to lights lh«|t 
we might not sorrow, as the Heathen, which have 
no hope. You will now rejoice that religion has 
been the principal objed of your diligent study; 



rince by that means it is become more lirely and 
more ^£tive in your heart, than it is in that of many^ 
a well-meaning C(iristian. 

Since I read your last lettisr, I have loved you 
more than you can perhaps imagine. Ood will not 
withdraw his comfort fromyou; he will still preserve 
you in life and health. We shall still pass many 
ihiproving hours together ; at least this is my air- 
dent wi^h. 



GlESBCKB TO KlOPSTOCK. 

Zuedlinburgi Jan. 26. 

I Thank you most sincerely for your letter, and 
for imparting to me that which you wrote to Cramer. 
They have very much gratified and edified me ; and 
not only confirmed my hope that God will support 
you, but. convinced me, that He can do, and aAu- 
ally does, more than we, with all our confidence in 
Him, presume to expefi;. You ar^^right in exhort- 
ing your friends to praise Him with you. I am 
persuaded that He will still further strengthen you. 

Keep your promise of communicating to me 
ttrhatever you may recoiled of the last days and 
hours ofyour blessed Meta, A ccou&t^ of tfiis sort 



[ 200 ] 

are important to every Christian ; and hour much 
more when they are^ at the same tinie^ accounts of 
our friends. I see that God can turn all things to 
good for them that are his; and I must ascribe it to 
this causcj if my letters have given you any satis- 

faftion. 1 know not what I wrote. 

How shall I rejoice in the springs if it bring you 
to us ! Then will I weep with you^ and weeping 
praise our God. I have yet much to ask you^ and 
much to say of the blessed princess. There too we 
have experienced that Christians have peculiar com- 
fort. Your angel is now with her. I feel assured 
that they know each other. Had your Meta gone 
before her into eternity, she would have rejoiced at 
the thought of seeing her there, as she did in her 
last hours, in the hope of meeting others of my glo- 
rified friends, of whom we had often spoken. — -— 



Dr. Yocjno to Klopstock. 

Wellwyn, Feb. 4. 
— I Cannot lay down my pen, without telling 
you bow much my heart sympathises with yours in 
your very, v^ry severe loss. I am but too well qua* 



[ SOI 3 

lified to do so^ because it is not long since a similar 
affliftion befel me. I say not long, although many 
years have since elapsed. But the wound was so 
deep^ that it appears to me still recent, and it often 
bleeds^ as if I had but yesterday received it. May 
the Almighty God support you^ in his great 
mercy^ with many^ many other blessings, 

Fatis cotttrariafata rependetu. 



Countess Bernstorff to Klofstock. 

March 13» 
You have sent me a sheet of Letters from the 
Dead to the Living, without telling me by whom they 
are written ; but I think I can guess. It is not you; 
It is your wife. I beg you to continue them, for I 
think them very interesting. I particularly like this 
sort of letters, when they are so well written as these 
are. 

From the Same to Klopstock. 

March 20. 
How much jam I obliged to you for having 
complied with my wishes, by sending me the con- 



/ 



C 20t ] 

limialion el the Letters from the Dead, n t ein but 
^ntly tell you bow much I Feel in reading them; 
To bow many reflexions have they led me I I hope 
diere are many more of them^ but there will still be 
loo few for me* 



Extract of a Letter from Dr. Young 

TO Klopstock.^ 

Jpril If, 1761. 
I Thank yon for the melancholy, yet pleasing 
sight of your dear wife's monument. I read in it 
the Christian chara6ier of her husband. Its last 
word was the common salutation of the prifnitive 
Cthristians, when they met each other, — SesurrexiL 
Should not our hearts burn within us at the blessed 
iK>und ? That word carries in it all our hope and 
joy. We shall soon bury all our other hope and 
joy, never to rise again. And shall Beings that have 
no end, prize any thing that has ? Christ is in* 
deed the truth, and the world a lie. Infidels believe 
it, and are undone. 

^ This letter was written after the publication of Mr. 

Klopstock^s booki but the editor belieyes that the inserfioa 

' ef it will recpire no apology. * 



[; 2D* J 

<^ I love your fsath and virtue^ I admire your geniua^' 
I deplore your loss^ I pity your distress^ I pray for 
your prosperity^ and shall be ever proud- of your 
oomipiindsi ; beings moat cordially^ 

My dear Sir, 
Your most obedient and most humble servant^ 

E. YOUNG. 



aas 



Mr. Klopstock, in continuatmu 



Thus far the letters of my friends. 



She is not yet buried in the place where I hope 
to rest beside her, I iikend to have our grave made 
in some village church-yard by the Elbe. J will 
choose a beautiful country^ for the sake of those 
who may visit it. With the same view^ and not 
from the vanity of adorning a very simple tomb^ I 
bave requested her two sisters each to plant z tree 



r 20* ] 

by the side of her grave^ and her dearest firiend (6 
sow flowers upon it. f 

On the grave-stone shall be two wheat-sheaves^ 
negligently laid one on the other. Under tbem^ 

*^ Seed sown by GpD> to ripen for the harvest.'' 
{In the middle of the grave-stone these words) 

MARGARETTA KLOPSTOCK, 

There, when death is not| awaits 

Her fiiendy her beloved, her husband. 

Whom she so loves, by whom she is so beloved! 

But from hence, from this grave. 

Thou, my Klopstock, and I, and our Son, 

From hence will we rise together. 

Worship Him who also died, was buried, and arose! 

She was bom March 16, 1728* 

Married June 10, 1754, and died Nov. 28, 1758. 

Her Son sleeps in her .arms* 

ffamiurgt JfrU 10, 1759. 





I ^^-t>-^ 






r SOS 2 



Letters written by Klopstock to his 

departed Meta. 



X HAVE hitherto restrained my wish of writing 
•*" something which might perhaps be made known 
to thee before my death; because .1 feared that my 
feelings would take too strong hold on me. But 
now that I have j list read over my last letters lo thee, 
I can ho longer withstand that wish.— Where shall 
I begin, my tww quite heavenly friend ! Can it be^ 
that some small part of thy present unspeakable hap- 
piness consists in thinking of me ? Ah! wretcheii 
I was left behind.—- 1 am a sinner, and still on this 
side of the grave. Yet did the Being of beings permit 
me to foresee my fate. Of this I am convinced, that 
it makes a part of thy ;pr^nt happiness to remember, 
what never can be forgotten by me, the grace that I 
received at the tifaie when 1 was forced to tak^ Idave 
of thee. Thou must have seen in my fiicc the* joy 
which God gave me. ' Dost thou know how I Telt, 



xny Mela? Yes^ I will still call thee by that sweet 
name. My soul was highly exalted. I no more saw 
death in thy face; I felt not the clammy coldness of 
thy hand. — I cannot fully describe my situation ; 
but this I know^ that to a martyr over whom I bad 
seen Heaven open^ I should have cried with no other . 
feelings, '^ Thanksgiving, and worship, and praise 
be to the All-wise and the All-merciful !'' May this 
be ^till my ruling thought, and be that which thoit 
fhall first hear of me; if, indeed^ thou canst hear of 
me befi)re my death. The angels concern themr 
selves with many things relating to us mortals, and 
perhaps with more than we believe. Or perhaps ^ 
the first of our friends who goes to Heaven will tell 
thee what I now write. In this hope I will repea^^ 
Thanksgiving and worship, and praise be to the A\U 
wise and the AlUmerciful ! Yes» with this heavenly 
salutation shall our blessed friend accost thee, in my 
pame, O thou perfefted^ and highly beloved I 



LETTER n. 

♦ 

I Was forced to break off; but I will now tell thee 
4Kiinethingj I cannot repeat it all, oi what befel me 
after I left thee. I had before prayed with macb 



[ iOT ] 

mifiaainess and anguish. I could now pray widl' 
qnite different feelings. I intreated perfeft sub*' 
mission; my soul hung on God; I was refreshed, 
I was comforted^ and prepared for the stroke thai 
was already so nearj---iiearer than I thought. I be*' 
lieyed that thou wouldst yet live some bours^ (this 
nvas my cnhf hope^) and that according to thy wish, 
expressed not long before I left thee, I might once 
more be permitted to pray with thee. But how often 
ate our thoughts, not as God's thoughts. TIkxi'. 
wert departed ! They told me so, but in such a' 
manner that for a moment I believed thee delivered 
of our child, and heard in the next that thou wKst' 
with GoDl<^This stroke, which overcame the' 
others, only shook me. How was this, thou beloved 
of my soul ? My prayer was heard. I strove to be 
perfeAly resigned ; and perhaps thou hadst then for 
the first time prayed for me in the other worId.««« 
I wept not, nor yet was I in Ihat state of extreme 
emotion in which one cannot weep. I said soon 
after thy death, '^ She is not far fix>m me.'' And 
thou wast not far from me ; we were both in the 
hsmd of the Omnipresent.-— After some time, I 
wished to see that which, just before, I had> called 
ipy Meta» They prevented me^ and a second stilU 



[ 208 ] 

H^sscame into my soul^ as I said to one of our friends^ 
*^ Then I will forbear. She will arise again !^' 
. ' The second night came the blessing of thy deatb> 
(till then I had considered it only as a trial^) the. 
blessing of such a death in its full power came on 
me. I passed above an hour in silent rapture. Only 
once in my life did I ever feel any thing similar^ 
when, in my youth, I thought myself dying. But 
the moments of my expefted departure then were 
somewhat different. My soul was raised with grati- 
tude and joy, but that sweet stillness'was not in it. 
Thou knowest how alive my feelings were, and how 
words flowed to me like a torreiit. But now the 
Tiighest degree of peace with which I ani acqutiintdd 
was in my soul. This state b^an wuh myrecol-' 
lefiling that thy Accomplisher and my Advocate 
said, ^^ He who loveth father or mother more than 
me, is not worthy of me.^* It is impossible to 
describe all the l)lessings of this hour. I was never 
before with such certainty convinced of niy. salva- 
tion. I ihank thee, with my whole soul, my hea- . 
venly friend ! for I ha^e a strong Jdea that thy prayers 
obtained for me this great blessing. So, perhaps, 
at our partingy— Ah ! the time will come when wc 
shall part no more ! — Now, my Meta, do I weep. 



[ 209 ] 

but thanks be to Him who then enabled me to 
^oice. — ^At our parting perhaps I did not beg in 
vain^ that thou wouldst be. my guardian angel ; or 
rather^ this our last wish^as heard of God ! 



LETTER III. 

How much should I have to write^ if I allowed 
myself to be at all circumstantial in the description of 
what I now feel for thee; now that lam alone^ that 
I live without thee ! How much should I have to 
tell thee ! But I must restrain myself. 

I should oftener give way^ my Meta^ to the me- 
lancholy that oppresses me^ I should think myself 
justified in giving way to it^ if I had not experienced 
8o mlich grace, at the time when the stroke of thy 
death fell on me ; if I did not remember it with joy 

« 

and gratitude, t am obliged to call it to mind to 
jrestrain the melancholy which came on even now as 
I recoUe&ed that there are but a few days to thy. 
birth-day^ which thou didst not outlive. How shall 
I pass it without her ? But I will ask this question 
no more. Was I not wonderfully supported on the 
day of thy death ?— A little while ago, as I was 
^one, at the approach of night, I imagined so 

1? 



strongly, I coidd almost say vrhli duel a di^e. off 
certainty, that thou wert befbrei me^ that 1 mor^thafo:,. 
ooce spoke to thee. €N> ! if thou wert kidccd wkb 
me, thea I need say fioiihiag mofe^^ Ye inhahitamte 
of Heaven ! are ye sometimes around us ? Oh, if this 
is allowed, my Meta has often already been with me! 
And why should ye not be permitted sometimes to visit 
nts } Are ye not lifke the Angels: ^ aiid aise not ihe 
Angeb sent down to mimistev to them jwho ih^i be 
Keifs of sa>vatioi^?* Eut if thou hast not been allowed 
to visit me, thou will soon, perhaps,, hear sonirething 
of me. I believe that the number is not small ot 

* « AH the ideas that man can form of die ways of Pro- 
vidence, and of the employments of Angels and Spirits, must 
ever fall short of the reality; but still it is right to think of 
them, and to raise his ideas as high as he can. He glorifies 
the inhabitant of Heaven, and at the same time gives a p'rodf 
of human greatness, when he raises the idea of perfe6&)a to 
the highest degree that we are capable of coaeeiviDg* What 
dati have a more exalting influence on the earthly Ufe, tfaan^ 
It these first days of owr existence^ to make ourselves con- 
versant with the lives of the Blessed> with the happy Spiritf 
whose society we shall hereafter enjoy, and with the future 
gloriea of the virtuous. By these idea? the mind. is prepared 
and formed to step forth with more confidence on the great 
theatre of the world. We should accustom ourselves to cob- 



tbosQ who BXt myiiriends without my knowing them; 
and whom I should, love^ if I did know them* Perhaps 
it may not be. long [before ope of, these will die^ and 
^beup my Meta, then vyijl hp h^sl^n to thee with my 
he^y^nly salutatipn, (may I np^ call it so ?) and with 
an account of the mercy which I have experienced*. 
^ow ijidxipw are my thoughts ! As. if thou couldsX 
iio^lr already know by other means what has be&llen^ 
^je since thy death ; as if thou, did^t not much mor^ 
^ccujrately ki^ow the intentions and tihe consequences^ 
of it. — May I fulfil the intentions^ which Cop, itk 
this grea;t trials and in the grace wherewith ^e sup- 
ported nie^ had in view ! I beseecbj I implore thee^ 
merciful JjEhovah 1 let me not quite fall short of 
them 1 Q what U is to wander still in the wilderness^ 
^nid never be at home! ]E[ow dangerous is th^ 
tenaptation to. sin! 

If by means wUfaf which I am unacquainted thou. 
4o^t know something of me^ yet there is. probabl)^ 
9iuch which is not important enough to be told thee. ]} 
will therefore mention yet a little more of what I wisti 

•tder the Spirits of Heaven as always around us; observing all 
our steps^ and witnessing our most secret anions. Whoever 
is become fairiiliar with these ideas, will find the mostsditary 
place peopled with the best society." — KhpstocL 

P 2 



C 2li ) 

ihec to hear. Certainly not with such sorrow as can 
in any degree diminish thy present felicity, yet with 
some soft emotion for my fate, thou feelest now 
what those letters must be to me, those letters in 
which thou didst suppose me where thou art now^ 
and thyself yet here. *• For this world, for w^r,'** 

my Meta. Yes, it is short, very short, the^i^ ever 

6f this world. How soon wast thou taken from me! 
How suddenly was thy time, with all its happiness, 
gone for me I But never, never will I complain ! 
Not even that the for ever of this world often ap- 
pears to me far from short. How can I complain } 
How can I forget the comfort, the gracious refresh- 
ment which restored my soul, when my path was the 
roughest, when the wilderness of my pilgrimage 
most resembled that shadowy vale which thou didst 
traii^erse? Yes, Meta, no heart but such as thine, 
could, with a tenderness beyond comparison, hava 
wished to outlive thy Beloved ! Full well I know 
bow often and how earnestly thou hast wished this 
when thou wert with me, and what I felt at the time! 
If a human being could merit any thing from God, 
I would say that by this pure tenderness thou hast 
merited not to be the deserted one, to have thy 

* See Page 133. 



[ fll3 1 

course so soon accomplished ! It is exalted virtue 
to bear the cross as God wills; but how very un- 
equal should I have been to bear it ! Thou remem- 
berest how the mighty arm that has led me^ had 
already begun to support me^ when we talked of thy 
deaths and I always broke off the subject by sayings 
*^ As our God will !*' Thou knowest how cheerful 
we then were. It was not then far off, that hour of 
my torture, and I was to be prepared for it ! Thou 
too wouldst not have been too much cast down. To 
thee too would have been given strength, more than 
thou hadst dared to hope. And thankful, (for with 
gratitude didst thou always receive whatever came 
from the hand of God,) thankful wouldst thou have 
been, and have repressed the grief of thy heart. Ah, 
Meta, dost thou not still love me? love me so 
that thy heart, though in Heaven, longs for me } 
How sweet, how inexpressibly sweet is this thought 1 
Yes, thou art for ever mine, thou wert made for me, 
my now quite heavenly love I O that it would come, 
the moment of our meeting, that moment full of joy 
beyond expression j O that it would come! — But^ 
no, — I must not give way to this idea. If I have 
ever clearly seen how confined we are, even with 
regard to our favourite pursuits, I mean the pursuit 



/ 



[ «4 1 

#f our individual happiiieBs ; if I have e^er seen tUa 
afnroii^y, it was when, soon after thy deaths I soibeN* 
titties '^shed'that ihou mtghtedt in solne tvay maker 
Aryself icnown to me. Wha4; wish cOuid be 'inore 
lyatupal? And what truer happiness oocdd I faava 
wi^ed for myself in this world ? Vet what wf ah 
can be formed with less hope ?*^nd why is it tkctt 
fulfilled ? Because such a discovery is incompatible 
with the general happiness bf the whole. Tbon 
seest now the whole system of this imiversal happi- 
ness. Would it be disturbed by thy making thysetf 
known to me^in my last moments? O if thou 
mayest^ without a doobt thou wUt ! Then wiUthou 

hover^ not -invisibly^ around me; then ^What 

heaven is in the thought !—-^--«then wilt thou appear 
to my closing eyes ! But do I not wish too much ? 
Yes, far too much if I spoke of reward ; but I speak 
•f grace Which God through thee might grant met 



LETTER IV. 

' The idea of thee, when thou wert near deaths 
often appears to me now, much more afie&ing than 
it was at the moment I saw tliee ; at that moment of 
my great strengthetring. I have need bf all thafis 



l 215 3 

sweet and enchanting in the thought of the resur- 
reftion, and of the Almighty Awakener to free 
myself from this image. Let him who knows not 
yet the bliss of the Resurreftion^ who has not 
tasted its comforts^ let him see a friend or a wife die^ 
and he will learn it. Though by this thought I can 
free myself from this impression, yet lam now glad 
that I did not see thee dead; however difficult it was 
to me at the time to forbear. Thou who couldst t 
not endure a single day's absence from me, (Oh, well > 
I know how ill thou couldst endure it!^) .thou didst 
contentedly see me leave thee, and didst not send for ; 
me to return, though I had promised to pray with' i 
thee again. What was this change in thee ? Thou ' 
wast quite detached from this world. It was, the 
•begi-nning of eternal life ! Though I k^ow that 
♦thou hast never ceased to love me, yet this thought 
•would be painful to me, had it not been for the sake 
of the great Objeftofour worship, that thou didst 
tear thyself even from me. But when thou hadst 
obtained the prize — then, (this I hope to God who 
gave thee tome) then didst thou think on me again 3 
then didst thou wish, with a peaceful wish of heaven, 
that I might soon come to thee ! The will of Gop 
be done, as in heaven so .also on the earth I 



C ^16- 3 



LETTER V. 

I Often think of thy present felicity^ but ho>y im- 
perfe6lly ! As we, so short a time since, thought to- 
gether of the happiness of the other world. Many a 
time do I figure thee to myself with the blessed one 
who was thy child; thou happy mother, of whose 
bliss I have scarcely a distant idea ; often do I re- 
present thee to myself, soaring amidst those worlds, 
a few of which illuminate our nights, and where thou 
art continually becoming acquainted with new and 
countless multitudes of their inhabitants. Then 
kow expanded is my soul, and how detached from 
earth ! Thou knowest how I used to be enraptured 
with tbethought of those multitudes of happy beings! 
How much more now that thou art amongst them ! 
Here I can in some degree follow thee, but when I 
would trace thee where thou beholdest Him who has 
redeemed us. Him whom even on earth thou didst 
so much love, — I lose myself, and my ideas almost 
totally fail ! 

The seer of the Apocalypse saw, on Mount Sion, 
high in heaven, a Lamb, standing covered with 
wounds of glory, and with precious blood of sal- 



I an 3 

vatioQ I There stood scround hini an hundred and 
forty-four thousand redeemed; conspicuous on their 
foreheads was inscribed the name of the Everlasting 
Father. As the sea^ as the voice of thunder^ the 
harps resounded in the hands of the redeemed. Of 
the Son they sung, of the Son ! For life eternal de« 
soended on their souls from the glorious wounds of 
the Lamb! 

I will take leave of thee no more. We are both 
in the hand of Him who is every where ! 



t ^^9 3 



ODES. 



ALL who have read Klopetock^s Odes must besensible ojf 
the difficulty, perhaps I might say the impossibility, ot 
giving the English reader a just idea of them. Those which are 
now offered to the public, are selected fr6m many which 1^9 
S — translated, because, from their subjeds, they are com 
nested with the preceding letters. For the simple mode of 
translation which is here adopted, I find the following apo- 
logy in an unfinished preface by Miss S— ^: 

** I venture to offer a few remarks, to obviate some ob* 
jedlions, which I know will be made, to the translations of 
those Odes of Klopstock which appear in this work. It 
will be said they are rough. I grant it ; but let it be re- 
membered that my aim has not been to make finished English 
Odes, but to give to the English reader, as far as lay in my 
power, an idea of Klopstock's Odes. Ellopstock himself is 
rough; not because he was ignorant o{ the powers of har- 
mony, for he studied that, and brought the German language 
to a pitch of excellence it had never before attained ; bat he 
ii rough, because his subjedls in general are such as do not 
admit of polished versification. They are sublime, wild, oftea 



\ 



[ 220 ] 

unconnected except by some thin thread of the Foetus fanc^f 
which every reader will not catch. The merit of the Odes 
consists in the depth of thought, the conciseness of expression, 
the loftiness of the ideas; their character throughout is energy 
and strength. And shall these magnificent poems be tor- 
tured into our .dull tune often syllables, because the English 
car is so accustomed to it that it is become a sort of national 
lullaby f Shall a noble thought be dragged out into weak- 
ness, to fill up a drawling line ? Shall the expression be 
totally lost to make a jingle at the end? Klopstock had aa 
aversion to rhyme.'^ 

To this unfinished sketch I will only add my persuasion, 
on the authority of good judges, that the few poems which 
are printed in this volume will be found to convey the sense 
of the author with an uncommon degree of accuracy, and 
with much of the strength of the original* 



[ 821 ] 



TO EBERT, ' -' ^^ ^t^ 

r 






A Dread idea, Ebert! from the cheerful board 

Drives me to deepest gloom; 
In vain thou bidst me o'er the care dispelling glasi 

To cherish cheerful thoughts ; 
I must away and weep. — Perhaps these soothing tears 

May wash away my woe. 

soothing tears! by nature wisely were ye giv'n 

To attend on human grief. 
Were it not so, — could man not weep his misery. 
How would he bear it then ? 

1 must away, and woep,— my agonizing thought 

Yet powerful strives within me. 
Ebert! suppose them now all gone, — ^the sacred grave 

Overwhelming all our friends. 
And we two lonely ones, — ^we only left of all. 

Art thou not speechless, Ebert? 
Looks not thine eye mournful around, then fixes viewless? 

So m}^ sight died away; 
So I too trembled, when this terrific thought 

In thunder struck me first. 
^ As when a traveller hastening to his home, his wife. 

His manly hopefld son. 
His blooming daughter; weeps e'en now for their embrace,— » 

Him thunder overtakes, 



If ^n I 

Destroying seizes him> and turns his form to dust. 

And then in triumph seeks p 

Again the lofty clouds of fieas^epx-^so struck the thought 

My agitated mind : 
My eye wap lost in darkness^ and my trembling knees 

Unnerv'd and pow'rless sunk. 
In silent night th^ vision of the dead passed by, — 

I saw our friends all pass ;-— , 
And oh ! in qilent night I saw the open graves, 

I saw th' immortal host! 
When tender Giesecke's eye shall smilje on me no more,-r- 

When far from Radichen. 
Our upright Crameji pines, — ^when Gartner, Rabener's 

No more Socratic speaks, — tongue 

In the harmonious life of noble-minded Gixlert 

When ev'ry string is hush'd, — 
Beyond the grave when open hearted Rothk 

Seeks the companions of his joy, — 
When lively Schleoei, from a longer exile 

To no friend writes again, — 
When in my dearest Schmidt's, embrace my eye no more 

Weeps tears of tenderness, — 
When with our fathers Hagedorn is lai4 to rest; 

Ebert! what are we then? 
We, dedicate to pain,.whpm here a mournful fate 

Has left behind ihem all! r^ ^ 

Should one of us then die — (my thought leads on 

From shade to deepest gloom)— 



Should one of ns tUeoi <Be^ aai ass alone remaio*. J 

And should that one be roe ; — , 
Should she too then have Ux^d me^ shq who. is. to lovei^ \ 

Should she too rest ia dnsslv 
And I remain the only one — ^remain alone on earth,— 

Wilt thou immortal mind, 
Thou soul for friendship form'd, behold those empty days. 

And yet retain thy feeling? 
Or wilt thou stupified suppose them nights, and sleep, 

And rest, devoid of thought ? 
But shouldst thou then awake to feet thy misery. 

Eternal suffering mind 1 
Call when thou wak'st ray lost friend's image from' diegrsvt; 

Restore me only that. 
Ye graves, where sleep my fnends, abodes of those I lovCf 

Why lie ye scattered wide? 
Ah! why not side by side plac'd in a blooming Yale» 

Or gather 'd in a grovel 
O lead the dying son of other days;— ^FU go 

With tottering steps, and plant 
On every grave a cypress |-<-<the yet shadeless trees 

For after ages tend; 
At night upon the topa»iSt boughs the heav'nly forme 

Of my immortals see. 
And trembling raise my head to Heav'n> and weep, and die. 

O bury then the dead 
Beside the grave by which he died. Comiptioil! take» 

Then take my tears and me. 



I 22* ] 

Ceasey sable thoagfat! O ceaae to thunder in my son^ 

Deep as eternityy 
As jodgment fearfnl, cease. The o'er-whelm'd ioqI 
No more can grasp the thought. 



TO FANNY. 

« * 

WHEN I am dead, when all these bones are dusty 

When thouy my eye, hast, closing, ceas'd to weep; 

No more, to where the unknown future dwells, 

In humble expedation to look up ; 

When my poetic fame, of youthful tears 

The fruit, and of my love to Thee, Messiah, 

Is also pass'd away; or but by few 

Is in this lower world rememjber'd still 

When thou, my Fanny, too, hast long been dead. 

And when thy mild eye's cheerful, placid smile, 

And lis expressive look, is also quench'd ; 

When, unobserv'd of the ignoble crowd, 

The virtuous deeds of all thy life are done. 

More worthy fame than is the Poet's song. 

And -ah! -when one more fortunate than 1 

Thou shalt have lov'd, (O leave me yet my pride, .' 



[ 223 ] 

More fortunate, but not more virtuous; 
Then will there be a day when I shall rise. 
Then will there be a day when thou wilt rise; 
Then shall no fate again divide the souls 
• Which, Nature, thou didst for each other doom. 
Then, with the scale in his uplifted hand, 
When God shall fortune against virtue weigh. 
What's now discordant in the course of things 
Shall then in endless harmony unite. 
Then, as thou standest new-awak'd, will I 
Hasten to thee, nor wait until a Seraph 
Shajl take my^hand, and lead to thee immortal: 
Then shall thy Brother, tenderly by nie 
Belov'd, haste with me. Then, with tears of rapture, 
Will I beside thee stand, and call Chee Fanny, 
And press thee to my heart. O then, eternity, 
Thou'rt all our own ! Ye joys, above the pow'r 
Of song, O come, ye joys unspeakable ! 
Unspeakable as now my woe! Till then 
Run on my life ! The hour will surely come. 
That calls us to the silent, cypress shade. 
Ye intervening hours, clouded and dark, 
Be dedicate alone to mourning love! 



Q 



[ «26 ] 



TO BODMER. 

\See FragmeniSi p. 120.] 

HE who direfts our fate^ disperses oft 
In empty air the purest wish we breathe 
After some golden image of delightf 
And sets a lab3^nth where man would walk. 
Deep in the distance of eternity 
God sees; — a scene, to us unvisible. 
Alas! they find not one the other, th^ 
Who for each other and for love were made ; 
Now in far distant climes their lot is cast. 
And now long ages roll their course between* 
Ne'er did my eye behold thee, Addison, 
Ne'er did my ear learn wisdom from % lips. 
Nor ever yet did Singer* smile on me. 
She who unites the living and the dead. 
Thee too I never shall behold, thou who 
In after times, when I have long been dead, 
Shalt rise most like me, made for my own hearty 
And thine will pant for me. I shall not see 
How thou employ'st thy little span of life. 
Unless thy Guardian Angel I become. 
Thus did His sovereign power ordain, who views 

* Mrs. Rowe. 



[ S27 ] 

I 

The &thQmIefl8 abyss of infintt^. 

Yet oft, In mercy, doth He bring to pass 

What the poor trembling heart scarce dar'd to ho|Pc 

As from a dream awakM, we sec our bliss, 

Enraptured see our fondest wish fulfill^, 

Such was my joy when Bo2>msr first i moi* 



THE RECANTATION. 



LONG drown'd in deepest woe, I learnt the pow'r 
Of love ; that lore which, fled from earth, still deigns 
To visit humble virtue's calm retreat* 
Such as the first of lovers felt, when first. 
All innocence, he viewed the glassy stream; 
He saw the flowers which grac'd th' overhanging bank; 
With inexperienced eye he saw, and smil'd! 
TIjUS kve appear'd to me. Why then, O Pain, 
X)id8t thou seek out thy deepest woimding shaft. 
With keenest anguish barb'd, to plunge me deep. 
Deep in a night of woe 1 Years are gone by, 

a 2 



/ 

[ 228 ] 

Long years of pain, since that fell stroke was struck* 

At lengthy beyond my hope, the night retires ; 

Tis paik» — ^and all my long-lost joys awake; 

Smiling they wake, my long forgotten joys 

Are ye indeed retam'd, with diat sweet peace 

Which blest my soul) when yet my life was happy? 

O how I wonder at my alter'd fate! 

Again I feel myself restored to joy. 

Again with rapture beats my grateful heart. 

Can it be pride, or apathy, which works 

This happy change, and heals my wounded soul? 

No — ^these my soul disdains. What is it then? 

O Virtue, gentle Virtue, say, dost thou 

Thy humble votary richly thus reward? 

But is it thou alone? . or dare I hope 

That from thy guiding hand I shall receive 

The lovely maid who softly smiles on me? 

Fair she appeared when first in sleep beheld, 

But fairer when before my waking eyes 

She glides along. I strive to speak — * O stay. 

Why dost thou haste away? *Tis thee I love. 

Ah ! well thou know'st this heart. Too well thou know's 

How tenderly it lov'd. Is there a heart 
Which loves like mine? Yes, Cidli, thine alone. • 
I I taught thee first to love; in seeking thee 
j I learnt what true love was. It rais'd my heart 
From earth to heav'n; an^ now thro' Eden's groves 
With thee it leads me on to endless joy!' 



[ 229 ] 



THE BAND OF ROSES, 



I FOUND her sleeping in the shade, 
I bound her wilh a band of Roses ; 
She felt it not, but si umber 'd sdlL 

I gazed on her; — ^my life then hung 
On her life, with that look, for ever: 
I felt it deeply, but. I could not speak. 

I whisper'd softly, but she did not hear; 
I gently shook the Band of Roses : 
Then from her slumber she awoke. 

She gazed on me; — ^her life then htmg 
On my life, with that look, for ever; 
And round us was Elysium. 



[ 530 3 

TO CIDLI, SLEEPING. 

SHE sleeps! O gentle Sleep, shed from thy mngs. 
Balsamic life o'er all her tender frame! 
From Eden's pure and peaceful fount 
X)raw forth some drops of liquid crystal. 

And sprinkling them where from her loyely cheek 
The rose is fled, restore the glowmg tints; 
And thou, sweet Peace of Virtue and of Love^ 
Thou fairest of the graces, with thy wing, 

O shade my Cidli! See,JChe sleeps; hotir still! 
Be silent thou my softest string: thy laurel wreath 
Shall fade, if from her slumber thou awake. 
With gentlest whisper wake, my sleeping love! 



TO MR. SCHMIDT. 

SLEEP from my eyes is fled, with all its train 
Of airy dreams, for poets only made. 
The hill, the vale is still; o'erspread with dew. 
That silent creeps within the slumbering flowers^ 
' Friend, all things sleep ! My best, my kindest friend. 



--d 



[ 231 ] 

In this beloved) thissokmn sdllheftSy ScHHrnr*' 

With strong emotion do I think on thee» 

On thee» though distant £ar. O that these arms^ 

Thou much beloved, could press thee to my hearth ^ 

Thy mournful friend weeps for thy lost embrace^ — 

Of which our cruel &te deprives me still. 

Behold, how noUe souls like brothers love; I 

Ko— brothers love not half so tendeHy* J 

Yet dost, thou, fate divide those noble souls, 

And pierce with deepest woe the bleeding heart! 

Thus am 1 left to breathe my secret sighs 

Far from the faithful friend, whose gentle look 

Shall comfort me no i][iore4 Thus do I breathe 

My secret sighs, as awful midnight still. 

And what 1 sigh can reach no human ear. 

Now torturing thought restrains the bursting tear. 
What agoniung image tears my soul! 
Again the form of my lost wife I see. 
She lies before me, and she dies again ; 
Again she smiles on me, again she dies. 
Her eyes now close, and comfort me no more ; 
No more her mouth divine shall whisper peace, 
That mouth for ever full of God and heaven. 
No more she gently chides the silent tear 
That fearful shrunk from her observing eye. 
She saw the tear, was griev'd, and firmly cry'd, 
•* Thou lov'st me, O my friend, and dost thou weep?" 
I check'd the tear, in spite of inward grief, 



[ 232 ] 

Calm and resigo'd, I sigh'd not to be heard. 
O who shall now forbid my tears to flow? 
Her Tolce inspires with fortitude no more! 

Still will I fitrive to check my ceaseless woe. 
That if she now my guardian angel be. 
And view me stilU she may not love me less. 
Because I have not strength of mind like hers. 
Now that amongst immortals thou dost dwell. 
If still weak mortals may deserve thy care, 
O if thou love me still, by heavenly rules 
Condemn me not ; — I am a man 9 and mourn. 
Support me, though unseen: thy cheering eye 
Can arm my soul with more than human strength ; 
Then will I learn to check my woe, till thou 
In death shalt teach me to be firni like thee ! 

O never, never can I cease to mourn 
This best of friends ! Mourn with me distant times. 
More virtuous times perhaps than ours. I see 
Around her grave, I see ye weeping stand. 
And strew the turf with floVrs, and midst your tears 
Say to your sighing daughtersf " Be like her !'* 
O friend of virtue, in thy arms I wish 
To shed these tears, for thou wouldst weep with me I 



[ «S3 ] 



TO KLOPSTOCK, 
Br Mm S—, 

ACH, sie finden aich nicht, die fur einander docb, 

Und zur liebe geschaffen sind ; 
Jetzo trennet die nacht fernerer Himmel sie 

Jetzo lange jalirhunderte.* Kkpstoeh 

THUS, blessed Spirit, ran thy deep complaint; 

In all things else, to Heaven's high will resigned. 

This only seem'd too hard: — and hard indeed 

It isy that time and space should intervene 

To pait those souls* by their Creator's hand 

Attun'd to concord;— -seeming thus ordain'd 

To mingle sounds in heavenly harmony* 

Yet sundered now so far» no breeze can waft 

The dying tones of one* to vibrate on 

The other's sympathetic chords* — ^Nor is 

This all. — ^Doom'd each to mix with neighbour notes* 

Notes* not perhaps ill-sounding* yet with theni 

Jarring in discord insupportable* 

This— this indeed is hard. It tempts suspicion 



) 



* Alas! they find not one the other,— they 
Who for each other and for love were made; 
Now In far distant climes their lot is cast. 
And vtfW lomg ages roll their course between. 

Ode, U Bodmir^ page saS. 



[ml 

Of providence eternal, tempts to think 
The great macbifie of nature is deraipg'dL ■* 

VaiD> babbling Reason, peace !— Now Klopstock knows» 
He knows and bids thee sing, — ^this too is trial! 
For trial were we sent to dwell on earth. 
And what severer could be found than this? 
What other is there, to a virtuous mind 
That sees the nothingness of present life. 
The glory of the future, — and with love 
Unmi^c'd, looks up to Him, the only good? 
Sickness or health, riches or poverty, 
To such a mind are nothing; easy weights. 
If friendship help to bear them;^^ — but to live 
With those whose evVy word, and gesture, thrill 
Discordant through our frame; this is severe 
Unceasing trial* — But the more severe 
Th' appointed trial, the louder does it call 
Our courage up, and bid us instant arm' 
With Heav*n-ward patience and submission" meek; 

* ' • * • 

Trusting, when time and space shall be no more. 

To meet those sods from which they now divide us; 

If now possessing them, too' happy here. 

This Earth were Heaven, and nothing left to wish. 

In mercy, God forbids us here to* taste 

A long continuance of such happiness. 

There's yet another cause, celestial Klopstock^ 
Why souls for friendship fonn'd can seldom meet* 
They must be cast in Nature's finest mould • "• 



Of the suUimer essence of creation; 

And such are scarce; — at intervals sent down. 

As were of old the Prophets, to recall 

The baser herd to duty's sacred path, — 

To dress c^d truths in an altraftive garb, — ^ 

To shew men, *< virtue in herself how lovely," 

To explore the depths of science,— to unveil 

The mysteries of nature, — and beyond 

The narrow sphere of human ken, to make 

Discoveries, which might damp the reasoning pride 

Of dabblers in philosophy, and prove 

That things they cannot understand, exist; — 

That other men have higher faculties. 

And thence might lead them to imagine, iein^s 

Yet higher in the scale of intellea:. 

Truths which no human mind could ever grasp* 

These, to my w^ak perceptions, seem some ends 
By Providence propos'd in sending down. 
At times to earth, these high intelligences. 
And those were sure not answer'd, if they came 
At once, or in a cluster on the stage. 
Then other parts of space and time would want 
Their ehare of lustre ; — and to fill the void 
If more of first rate genius were produced, 
THts world's afFdrs would run into confusion. 
Too near, toO little to employ such minds. 
And thus, immortal Klopstock, souls like thihe 
Of friendship worthy, because capable. 



[ 886 ] 

Can scarce expert to meet their like on earth; 
Since for the general good they come, and not 
Their private happiness; — better attained 
By staying in their native country, Heav'n; 
And since this earth would be to them a Heav'fiy 
If with th«r equals only they conversM. 

'Tis true thou wast, a little while, most blest| 
But 'twas to th' end that thy example, when 
Divine command recaU'd the treasure lent. 
Might prove an useful lesson to the world ; 
Teaching, more feelingly than precept could. 
Loving as thou lov'dst, to resign like thee! 



IJNIS. 



Just publtsJudy price 6/. 

FRAGMENTSt in PROSE and VERSE, by a YOUNG LADY 

lately deceaaed. With some Account of her Ii£e and Writings, 
by the Author of <* Sermons on the Do<5trines and Duties of 

Christianity." 

Rklutfd Cruttwdl, Prioter, Stamp-Office, St JsmesV Sti t s t, Balk. 



I , 



i2i,!e0 






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